Description of original award (Fiscal Year 2020, $4,039,228)
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.
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 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 NCHIP 2020 program.