Assigned to HHS FOR COMMITTEE

 


 

 

 


ARIZONA STATE SENATE

Fifty-Fourth Legislature, Second Regular Session

 

FACT SHEET FOR S.B. 1504

 

fingerprinting; vital records; child care

Purpose

Requires certain Department of Economic Security (DES) and Department of Health Services (DHS) employees and contractors to have a fingerprint clearance card or provide documentation that they have applied for a fingerprint clearance card. Requires all child care personnel and volunteers to have a valid fingerprint clearance card before beginning employment or volunteer service, rather than within seven working days of employment or volunteer service.

Background

Laws 1998, Chapter 270 standardizes state and federal criminal history records checks conducted by the Arizona Supreme Court, DES, DHS, the Arizona Department of Education and Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections into a single process with the use of fingerprint clearance cards. Statute requires fingerprint clearance cards for several types of professional licensures, certifications and state jobs, including those that involve working with children or vulnerable adults. The Department of Public Safety (DPS) must deny a fingerprint clearance card to an applicant that is subject to registration as a sex offender, has been convicted of or is awaiting trial for certain crimes outlined in statute or, if DPS cannot determine the outcome of an arrest for these crimes, within 30 business days of receiving the criminal records.

Currently, all child care personnel, including volunteers, are required to apply for or obtain a valid fingerprint clearance card within seven working days of employment or volunteer work. Child care personnel includes: 1) any employee or volunteer working at a child care facility;
2) any employee of a certified child care group home; 3) any person who is at least 18 years old and who works or resides in a certified child care group home; 4) child care home providers,
in-home providers, noncertified relative providers and designated backup providers; 5) any person who is at least 18 years old and who works or resides in the home of a child care home provider; and 6) any registered child care home provider who receives compensation to care for four or fewer children and who is not certified by DES or DHS (A.R.S. 36-883.02; 36-897.03; 41-1964; and 41-1967.01).

Child care facilities are prohibited from allowing a person to be employed or volunteer in a facility in any capacity if the person has been denied a fingerprint clearance card or has not received interim approval from the Board of Fingerprinting (Board) (A.R.S. 36-883.02).

There is no anticipated fiscal impact to the state General Fund associated with this legislation.

Provisions

1.      Requires the following to have a fingerprint clearance card or provide documentation that they have applied for a fingerprint clearance card and certify that they are not awaiting trial on or been convicted of certain criminal offenses:

a)      each employee and contractor of DHS who is employed in an information technology (IT) position or who has access to vital records systems; and

b)      each employee of DHS who inspects facilities with children or vulnerable adults as part of the employee's regular duties.

2.      Requires each county employee or contractor who has access to vital records systems to have a valid fingerprint clearance card.

3.      Prohibits DHS from allowing a person to be an employed in an IT position, a position that has access to vital records systems or a position that inspects facilities with children or vulnerable adults if the individual has been denied a fingerprint clearance card or has not received interim approval from the Board.

4.      Prohibits a local registrar from allowing a person to be an employee with access to vital records systems if the individual has been denied a fingerprint clearance card or has not received interim approval from the Board.

5.      Requires child care personnel, including volunteers, and providers to have valid fingerprint clearance cards issued before being certified or registered by DES, residing in a setting that is certified by DES or starting employment or volunteer work, rather than allowing individuals to apply for a fingerprint clearance card before employment, beginning volunteer work, being certified or registered or residing in a setting that is certified by DES.

6.      Allows DPS to conduct periodic state and federal criminal history records checks for the purpose of updating the status of the following positions:

a)      current criminal justice employees or volunteers; and

b)      current licensees, employees, contract employees or volunteers of any noncriminal agency that specifically authorizes the noncriminal justice agency to receive criminal history records information.

7.      Authorizes DPS to submit fingerprints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) to be retained for the purpose of being searched by future submissions to the FBI.

8.      Allows DHS and DES to conduct background checks pursuant to the requirements of the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 2014 that are not included in the fingerprint clearance card process for:

a)      employees and volunteers of child care providers;

b)      any individual who is at least 18 years old and who works or resides in the home of a child care home provider;

c)      child care personnel; and

d)      child care providers.

9.      Allows DES to enter into agreements with other government agencies to conduct background checks.

10.  Makes technical and conforming changes.

11.  Becomes effective on the general effective date.

Prepared by Senate Research

February 17, 2020

CRS/KS/kja