Massachusetts House taking up bill to fix background check law

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August 26, 2013

By Nick Katers

Massachusetts

BOSTON, Massachusetts: The Massachusetts House Ways and Means Committee voted 17-1 on Friday to refine state laws that require background checks for school employees. The legislature passed a background check law in December 2012 that did not fully comply with federal law or Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) policies. S. 1839 adjusts the background check law to match language with federal law in order to gain access to FBI resources. The Senate passed the proposal 37-0 on July 30 and the House will likely take up the bill in September.[1][2]

Flaws in the bill signed into law by Governor Deval Patrick in January 2013 were not discovered until school district officials began to conduct background checks. The original bill would not have allowed local school officials to access federal resources for background checks facilitated by the FBI. S. 1839 also expands the scope of background checks to cover bus drivers, camp counselors and daycare employees.[2][3]

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