Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $1,202,617)
The NICS Improvement Amendments Act of 2007, P. L. 110-180 ("NIAA"), was initially signed into law by the President on January 8, 2008 (reauthorized by Title VI of the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2018, P.L. 115-141). The NIAA amends the Brady Handgun Violence Prevention Act of 1993 ("the Brady Act") (Pub. L. 103-159), under which the Attorney General established the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS). The Brady Act requires Federal Firearms Licensees (FFLs) to contact the NICS before transferring a firearm to an unlicensed person for information on whether the proposed transferee is prohibited from receiving or possessing a firearm under state or federal law. The NIAA authorizes grants to be made in a manner consistent with the National Criminal History Improvement Program (NCHIP).
Under the FY 18 award, the West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals will use funds to continue to reduce the backlog of court dispositions and improve the reporting of records of individuals with mental health adjudications. This is an ongoing effort going back to the FY 2014 project. The disposition backlog project and the WV Offender Case Management System (WVOCMS) projects, both play a vital role in the ability of the court to maintain and improve the quality, completeness and availability of records at the state and national levels. While the WV Supreme Court has made significant progress in addressing the backlog of dispositions in the Criminal Record Repository, there still remains several years backlog on disposition reporting. This incomplete record information is of concern due to the increased use of criminal history records for criminal justice, non-criminal justice, and homeland security purposes. The backlog is directly related to staffing and resources available to process the incoming disposition forms being submitted by court clerks throughout the state. The second gap, reporting of indictments to complete the criminal history file, was also identified in the Courts 2014 NCHIP application. To build upon the efforts, the Court will continue to fund the staff and efforts under this project.
The WVOCMS is the system that collects all demographic information, family and criminal history, assessment information, fees information, incarceration information, drug testing and other identifying information. The system has the capability to house scanned copies of the pre-sentence report, court orders and indictments and record missing dispositions for the pre-sentence and LS/CMI reports. The WVOCMS is the most accurate electronic system to pull indictment and submit case file data with a disposition and a required prohibitor to the state criminal record repository for inclusion in the criminal history file. The Court will also use funding to upgrade core networking equipment as the current system in place is outdated.