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A03455 Summary:

Add 845-c, Exec L
Relates to criminal history record searches and open warrants and when such warrants shall be excluded from reports.
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A03455 Memo:

submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the executive law, in relation to criminal history record searches and open warrants   PURPOSE: This bill will create a procedure to remove inaccurate information from an individual's permanent criminal record as maintained by the Division Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) as it relates to warrants issued as part of a criminal proceeding.   SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill adds a new section 845-c of the executive law creating a process whereby DCJS will exclude a warrant that has not been recalled from a person's criminal history records where there has been a new court proceeding reported on the case but no warrant has been recalled. This section will not apply to criminal justice history records available to state agencies with access to the DCJS data base under section 837(6) of the Executive Law or to law enforcement agen- cies, but will affect criminal history background checks for civil purposes. Section 2 provides an effective date.   EXISTING LAW: Under Subsection six of Executive Law § 837, the Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) is required to establish a repository to main- tain a record of all arrests and prosecutions in New York State, creat- ing an individual's rap sheet. The registry's data includes a record of all warrants issued as part of a criminal proceeding. Once these .warrants are vacated by the court, this information should then be sent to DCJS and recorded in the individual's rap sheet.   JUSTIFICATION: Due to failures in communication among the various criminal justice agencies, the process outlined in the Executive Law is not always followed, resulting in many individuals having rap sheets that list warrants as active that have actually been recalled. These mistakes can cause an individual to be denied employment, housing or public benefits for which they are eligible. Currently, in order to correct warrant-related mistakes of this sort, an individual must return to the court where his or her case was heard and ask the clerk of the court to forward information regarding the vacated warrant to DCJS so that this information may be correctly reflected on the individual's criminal record. An individual must follow this process even when it is clear from the criminal record that further proceedings occurred and that the warrant in question must have been previously cleared. This process becomes more complex, or even impossible, where the phantom warrant involves an old case. Under the Records Retention and Disposi- tion Schedule issued by the Office of Court Administration (OCA), courts are ordered to destroy records of all returned warrants within five years of the date of return or recall. Court case files, which may also contain records concerning warrants, are also scheduled to be destroyed after a period of time. This period can be as short a six years where the case was terminated in favor of the defendant or resulted in a violation disposition. Even records of cases that ended in a felony conviction are only retained for 25 years before they are destroyed. As a result, once the courts no longer have any record of these warrants, these persons have no opportunity to have this inaccurate information removed from their record. The proposed amendment provides a simple mechanism to have incorrect, outdated warrant information removed from criminal history records released for civil background checks. It will not affect the data seen by qualified state agencies, including the courts, or by law enforce- ment.   LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: A10858A referred to codes in 2007 and 2008. A.3665-A was referred to codes in 2009 and 2010. A.6473 was referred to codes in 2011 and 2012. A.2896-8 was ordered to third reading rules cal. 504 in 2013 and advanced to third reading cal. 497 in 2014. A.3998 was referred to codes in 2015 and 2016.   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.   EFFECTIVE DATE: This shall take effect January 1, 2019.
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A03455 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2017-2018 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                    January 27, 2017
        Introduced  by  M. of A. AUBRY, WEPRIN -- Multi-Sponsored by -- M. of A.
          PERRY -- read once and referred to the Committee on Codes
        AN ACT to amend the executive  law,  in  relation  to  criminal  history
          record searches and open warrants
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1.  The executive law is amended by adding a new section 845-c
     2  to read as follows:
     3    § 845-c. Criminal history record searches; open warrants. 1.   When  a
     4  criminal  record maintained by the division, pursuant to subdivision six
     5  of section eight  hundred  thirty-seven  of  this  article,  contains  a
     6  warrant  that  has  not  been recalled and the division has subsequently
     7  received a report of a new court proceeding on the  case  that  contains
     8  the warrant but no report that the warrant has been recalled, all refer-
     9  ences  to  such a warrant contained in the criminal history record shall
    10  be excluded from such report.
    11    2. The provisions of subdivision one of this section shall  not  apply
    12  to  criminal  history record information (a) provided by the division to
    13  qualified agencies pursuant to subdivision six of section eight  hundred
    14  thirty-seven  of  this  article  or  to federal or state law enforcement
    15  agencies for criminal justice purposes; (b) prepared solely for  a  bona
    16  fide research purpose; or (c) prepared for the internal recordkeeping or
    17  case management purposes of the division.
    18    § 2. This act shall take effect January 1, 2019.
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
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