Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2020, $2,039,241)
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 this award, the Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration, Office of Criminal Justice Programs will transfer funds to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) to aid in the state's efforts to improve criminal history records. Tennessees AFIS is the state version of the formerly Integrated Automated Fingerprint Identification System (IAFIS), now known as the Next Generation of Identification (NGI), which is the national fingerprint identification system that is managed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). For the TN AFIS to integrate effectively with the national system, the TBI must continually ensure improvements to the system are on-going and in alignment with the requirements of the FBI. Without the availability of funds for upgrades, the TBI has been working to maintain current service delivery by operating on a significantly older version of the TN AFIS system (2016); a version that now needs an even greater upgrade as each day goes by. TBI is requesting funds to implement a new AFIS with increased security and storage capacity, an upgraded disaster recovery plan, and rap back capability. Enhancing these functionalities will improve the quality and completeness of Tennessees computerized criminal history records, increase the number of available dispositions from courts and prosecutors, and improve mental health submissions reported to NICS.
Funds are also being requested to have two staff members attend the 2021 NAJIS Conference to explore IT technologies and standards that improve and engineer information sharing throughout the United States. Program management and support will also be covered with funds from the NARIP 2020 program.