Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2018, $606,023)
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).
During the 2015 Legislative Session, Tennessee passed legislation supporting a relief program. The bill established a Relief from Disabilities Program which provides a procedure for persons adjudicated mentally incompetent, not guilty by reason of insanity, mentally defective, or judicially committed to a mental institution to have the disability removed as it relates to the ability to purchase a firearm. The Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration (TDFA) will transfer funds to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) and the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) to aid in the state's efforts to improve criminal history records. TBI intends to have staff work overtime to research and manually flag appropriate records with disqualifying charges, and conduct queries of the states computerized criminal history (CCH) repository to identify and flag persons with past applicable disqualifying charges. Temporary staff will be used to review and submit backlogged dispositions, containing domestic violence related charges, into the states CCH. TBI also plans to enhance the message switch to run unattended without manual intervention when the server goes offline for ether a planned or unplanned outage. AOCs project includes the creation of an automated monitoring system for verifying the timely reporting of mental health records to the NICS Indices by court clerks. Project management and administrative fees, as well as travel expenses to the National Association for Justice Information Systems Conference for TDFA and TBI staff will be covered under this award.