REPORT TITLE:
Criminal History Checks


DESCRIPTION:
Allows private schools to develop procedures for obtaining
verifiable information regarding the criminal history of persons
who are employed or are seeking employment in positions which
place them in close proximity with children.  Requires the
employer to conduct criminal history checks for teachers and
teacher trainees, employees of the Department of Education and
employees of the counties who are in close proximity to children.
(SB1270 HD2)

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
                                                        1270
THE SENATE                              S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
TWENTIETH LEGISLATURE, 1999                                H.D. 2
STATE OF HAWAII                                            
                                                             
________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________


                   A  BILL  FOR  AN  ACT

RELATING TO EDUCATION.



BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:

 1      SECTION 1.  Chapter 846, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended
 
 2 by adding a new section to be appropriately designated and to
 
 3 read as follows:
 
 4      "846-    Employees of private schools; criminal history
 
 5 record checks.  (a)  Private schools may develop procedures for
 
 6 obtaining verifiable information regarding the criminal history
 
 7 of persons who are employed or are seeking employment in
 
 8 positions which place them in close proximity to children.  These
 
 9 procedures shall include criminal history record checks.  For the
 
10 purposes of this section, "criminal history record check" means
 
11 an examination or search for evidence of an individual's criminal
 
12 history by means of a criminal history record check conducted by
 
13 the Hawaii criminal justice data center; provided that the Hawaii
 
14 criminal justice data center may charge a reasonable fee for
 
15 criminal history record checks performed at the request of a
 
16 private school.
 
17      (b)  Except as otherwise specified, any person who is
 
18 employed or seeks employment with a private school in a position
 
19 which necessitates close proximity to children may be required to
 
20 provide to the private school a sworn statement indicating 
 

 
Page 2                                                     1270
                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
                                                        H.D. 2
                                                        

 
 1 whether or not the person has ever been convicted of an offense
 
 2 for which incarceration is a sentencing option, and the details
 
 3 of the offense.  Information obtained pursuant to subsection (a)
 
 4 and this subsection shall be used exclusively by the private
 
 5 school for the purpose of determining whether or not a person is
 
 6 suitable for working in close proximity to children.  All
 
 7 decisions shall be subject to federal laws and regulations
 
 8 currently or hereafter in effect.
 
 9      (c)  Private schools may refuse to employ or may terminate
 
10 the employment of an employee or applicant if the person has been
 
11 convicted of an offense for which incarceration is a sentencing
 
12 option, and if the private school finds by reason of the nature
 
13 and circumstances of the crime that the person poses a risk to
 
14 the health, safety, or well-being of children.  This refusal or
 
15 termination may occur only after appropriate investigation,
 
16 notification of results and planned action, and opportunity to
 
17 meet and rebut the finding."
 
18      SECTION 2.  Section 846-43, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is
 
19 amended to read as follows:
 
20      "846-43  Employees of the department of education, [and]
 
21 the counties[;], and teacher trainees in any public school;
 
22 criminal history checks.(a)  The department of education[,] and
 
23 the counties[, and respective private schools, may] shall develop
 

 
Page 3                                                     1270
                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
                                                        H.D. 2
                                                        

 
 1 procedures for obtaining verifiable information regarding the
 
 2 criminal history of persons who are employed [or are], seeking
 
 3 employment, or seeking to serve as teacher trainees in any public
 
 4 [or private schools] school, or who are employed or seeking
 
 5 employment in any county in positions which place them in close
 
 6 proximity to children.  These procedures shall include but not be
 
 7 limited to criminal history record checks.  For the purposes of
 
 8 this section, "criminal history record check" means an
 
 9 examination or search for evidence of an individual's criminal
 
10 history by means of:
 
11      (1)  A search [for] of the individual's fingerprints in the
 
12           Federal Bureau of Investigation criminal history record
 
13           files and, if found, an analysis and any other
 
14           information available pertaining thereto; and
 
15      (2)  A criminal history record check conducted by the Hawaii
 
16           criminal justice data center;
 
17 provided that the Hawaii criminal justice data center may charge
 
18 a reasonable fee for criminal history record checks performed
 
19 [for private schools and] for Federal Bureau of Investigation
 
20 criminal history record checks.
 
21      (b)  Except as otherwise specified, any person who is
 
22 employed or seeks employment with a public [or private] school,
 
23 or as a teacher trainee in any public school, or who is employed
 

 
Page 4                                                     1270
                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
                                                        H.D. 2
                                                        

 
 1 or seeks employment with any county in a position [which] that
 
 2 necessitates close proximity to children [may] shall be required
 
 3 to provide to the employer or prospective employer:
 
 4      (1)  A sworn statement indicating whether or not the person
 
 5           has ever been convicted of [a crime (other than a
 
 6           traffic violation involving a fine of $50 or less)] an
 
 7           offense for which incarceration is a sentencing option,
 
 8           and the details thereof;
 
 9      (2)  Written consent for the employer to conduct a criminal
 
10           history record check as provided in subsection (a) and
 
11           to obtain other information for verification; and
 
12      (3)  Permission to be fingerprinted for the purpose of the
 
13           Federal Bureau of Investigation criminal history record
 
14           check.
 
15 Information obtained pursuant to subsection (a) and this
 
16 subsection shall be used exclusively by the employer or
 
17 prospective employer for the purpose of determining whether or
 
18 not a person is suitable for working in close proximity to
 
19 children.  All such decisions shall be subject to federal laws
 
20 and regulations currently or hereafter in effect.
 
21      (c)  The employer or prospective employer may refuse to
 
22 employ, may refuse to issue a teaching or other educational
 
23 certificate to, may revoke the teaching or other educational
 

 
Page 5                                                     1270
                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
                                                        H.D. 2
                                                        

 
 1 certificate of, may refuse to allow or continue to allow
 
 2 permission to serve under training, or may terminate the
 
 3 employment of any employee or applicant if the person has been
 
 4 convicted of [a crime, other than a minor traffic offense
 
 5 involving a fine of $50 or less] an offense for which
 
 6 incarceration is a sentencing option, and if the employer or
 
 7 prospective employer finds by reason of the nature and
 
 8 circumstances of the crime that the person poses a risk to the
 
 9 health, safety, or well-being of children.  Such refusal,
 
10 revocation, or termination may occur only after appropriate
 
11 investigation, notification of results and planned action, and
 
12 opportunity to meet and rebut the finding, all of which need not
 
13 be conducted in accordance with chapter 91.
 
14      (d)  This section shall not be used by the department of
 
15 education to secure criminal history record checks on persons who
 
16 have been employed continuously by the department on a salaried
 
17 basis prior to July 1, 1990.
 
18      (e)  This section shall not be used by a county to secure
 
19 criminal history record checks on persons who have been employed
 
20 continuously on a salaried basis prior to June 1, 1998.
 
21      (f)  For the [purposes] purpose of this section, "close
 
22 proximity to children" as applied to the counties, applies to
 
23 programs and services for recreation or child care, or both.
 

 
Page 6                                                     1270
                                     S.B. NO.           S.D. 1
                                                        H.D. 2
                                                        

 
 1      (g)  For the purpose of this section, notwithstanding any
 
 2 other law to the contrary, the department of education[,] and the
 
 3 counties[, and private schools] shall be exempt from section
 
 4 831-3.1 and need not conduct its investigations, notifications,
 
 5 or hearings in accordance with chapter 91."
 
 6      SECTION 3.  Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed.
 
 7 New statutory material is underscored.
 
 8      SECTION 4.  This Act shall take effect on July 1, 1999.