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NCHIP FY2015 Program

Award Information

Award #
2015-RU-BX-K035
Location
Congressional District
Status
Closed
Funding First Awarded
2015
Total funding (to date)
$734,634

Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2015, $734,634)

The goal of the National Criminal History Improvement Program (NCHIP) is to improve the Nation's safety and security by enhancing the quality, completeness, and accessibility of criminal history record information and by insuring the nationwide implementation of criminal justice and noncriminal justice background check systems. BJS provides direct financial and technical assistance to the states to improve criminal history and other related records and to build their infrastructure to connect to national record check systems both to supply information and to conduct the requisite checks.

The Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services (MD DPSCS) will use funds to support the Missing Disposition Records project, the Livescan Courthouse project and developing a Query Utility and Variance report.

Under the missing disposition records project, the MD DPSCS states that in 2010 they had a baseline of missing dispositions totaling 175,008. Since then, approximately 174,008 records have been researched and updated, leaving a balance of 101,000 records missing critical disposition information for arrests. These files must be researched and linked to existing electronic arrest records in order to reduce the backlog of missing dispositions and comply with federal guidelines. Due to the requirements to be met under the Brady law, the state is concerned that if missing dispositions are not properly linked to arrest records, there may be an increased likelihood of granting applicants who would have otherwise been denied. Additionally, due to the extensive processing of the research for missing dispositions the MD DSPCS will acquire fifteen (15) monitors to improve productivity.

Under the Livescan Courthouse Project, the MD DPSCS propose to acquire livescans to help reduce existing gaps in services and foster collaboration and cooperation among partner agencies and stakeholders throughout Maryland. The Court Order Fingerprint (COF) pilot program is a new initiative, and while there seems to be great future utility, there are currently no Livescans in the courts across the 24 counties. The purpose of the Livescan Pilot is to allow the capability to submit offender fingerprints electronically as real-time court activities occur. The capture of offender fingerprints at the time of hearing and sentencing events will strengthen the criminal records environment by providing instant verification and documentation of the offender. The capture of offender fingerprints during court events will close the gap in missing arrests and dispositions within the criminal history database file maintained by the Department.

Under the Query Utility and Variance Report project, MD DPSCS works with Maryland’s Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) to receive felony conviction data. Currently, there is a variance between the court’s records and DPSCS records. The revitalization of the Query Utility tool will allow the MD DPSCS/CJIS staff to query the database without having to request the IT assistance when a report needs to be accessed or researched. Felony conviction data is the first federal NICS disqualifier and an absolutely critical component of the gun fitness decision. With this project, the MD DPSCS goal is to identify the variance and begin to identify how make data available at the state and national levels. This tool will allow MD DPSCS to identify in real time what is in their database and what is not. The Variance report will allow DPSCS CJIS to work closer with the submitting agencies on what information is missing in the felony conviction NICS Disqualifier category. In the last data run between the MD courts and DPSCS CJIS, it appeared that the courts had almost 70,000 more felony convictions than the State CJIS database. This project will focus on closing this gap.

(CA/NCF)

Date Created: September 16, 2015