The New York State legislature passed the 2019–2020 budget on April 1st, 2019, and Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the budget into law on Friday, April 12, 2019.
One provision in the new budget that will have a significant impact on businesses across the state, as well as any organization hiring people who have lived or worked in New York, is the NY Office of Court Administration (OCA) fee increase for criminal records searches from $65 to $95. This change came into effect on Saturday, April 13, 2019, a day after Governor Cuomo signed the Budget. Because some counties in New York restrict access to records, the only way to ensure full coverage in the state of NY is to run the OCA statewide search. For smaller businesses especially, this hefty fee hike may be cost prohibitive and prevent companies from running the criminal background checks that help keep workplaces safe.
The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS), of which Team Screening is a member, unsuccessfully lobbied the state to avoid this increase. NAPBS and its members will continue to explore opportunities with New York state to reconsider this decision.
Other key aspect of the 2019 – 2020 budget that may impact businesses:
Measures will be taken by New York to ensure that no criminal history record search conducted through the New York OCA will include undisposed cases. Undisposed cases include a criminal action or proceeding where there is no record of an executed warrant of arrest, superior court warrant of arrest or bench warrant, and for which there is no record of conviction or imposition of any sentence or penalty. The district attorney in the county of jurisdiction can notify the division if the case is pending at which point it will be reported.