Home > 106th Congressional Bills > S. 3045 (rfh) To improve the quality, timeliness, and credibility of forensic science services for criminal justice purposes, and for other purposes. [Referred in House] ...

S. 3045 (rfh) To improve the quality, timeliness, and credibility of forensic science services for criminal justice purposes, and for other purposes. [Referred in House] ...


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106th CONGRESS
  2d Session
                                S. 3045

To improve the quality, timeliness, and credibility of forensic science 
                services for criminal justice purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                   IN THE SENATE OF THE UNITED STATES

                           September 14, 2000

 Mr. Sessions (for himself, Mr. Cleland, Mr. Thurmond, Mr. Miller, Mr. 
  Dodd, Mr. Frist, Mr. Hatch, Mr. Lott, Mr. L. Chafee, Mr. Mack, Mr. 
Helms, Mr. Specter, Mr. Santorum, Mr. Nickles, Mr. Stevens, Mr. Durbin, 
Mr. Cochran, Mr. Hutchinson, Mr. Wellstone, Mr. Jeffords, Mr. Abraham, 
   Mr. Thomas, Mr. Shelby, Mr. Kyl, and Mr. Ashcroft) introduced the 
 following bill; which was read twice and referred to the Committee on 
                             the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
To improve the quality, timeliness, and credibility of forensic science 
                services for criminal justice purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Paul Coverdell National Forensic 
Sciences Improvement Act of 2000''.

SEC. 2. IMPROVING THE QUALITY, TIMELINESS, AND CREDIBILITY OF FORENSIC 
              SCIENCE SERVICES FOR CRIMINAL JUSTICE PURPOSES.

    (a) Description of Drug Control and System Improvement Grant 
Program.--Section 501(b) of title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and 
Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3751(b)) is amended--
            (1) in paragraph (25), by striking ``and'' at the end;
            (2) in paragraph (26), by striking the period at the end 
        and inserting ``; and''; and
            (3) by adding at the end the following:
    ``(27) improving the quality, timeliness, and credibility of 
forensic science services for criminal justice purposes.''.
    (b) State Applications.--Section 503(a) of title I of the Omnibus 
Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3753(a)) is 
amended by adding at the end the following:
    ``(13) If any part of the amount received from a grant under this 
part is to be used to improve the quality, timeliness, and credibility 
of forensic science services for criminal justice purposes, a 
certification that, as of the date of enactment of this paragraph, the 
State has an established--
            ``(A) forensic science laboratory or forensic science 
        laboratory system, that--
                    ``(i) employs 1 or more full-time scientists--
                            ``(I) whose principal duties are the 
                        examination of physical evidence for law 
                        enforcement agencies in criminal matters; and
                            ``(II) who provide testimony with respect 
                        to such physical evidence to the criminal 
                        justice system;
                    ``(ii) employs generally accepted practices and 
                procedures, as established by appropriate accrediting 
                organizations; and
                    ``(iii) is accredited by the Laboratory 
                Accreditation Board of the American Society of Crime 
                Laboratory Directors or the National Association of 
                Medical Examiners, or will use a portion of the grant 
                amount to prepare and apply for such accreditation by 
                not later than 2 years after the date on which a grant 
                is initially awarded under this paragraph; or
            ``(B) medical examiner's office (as defined by the National 
        Association of Medical Examiners) that--
                    ``(i) employs generally accepted practices and 
                procedures, as established by appropriate accrediting 
                organizations; and
                    ``(ii) is accredited by the Laboratory 
                Accreditation Board of the American Society of Crime 
                Laboratory Directors or the National Association of 
                Medical Examiners, or will use a portion of the grant 
                amount to prepare and apply for such accreditation by 
                not later than 2 years after the date on which a grant 
                is initially awarded under this paragraph.''.
    (c) Forensic Sciences Improvement Grants.--
            (1) In general.--Title I of the Omnibus Crime Control and 
        Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3711 et seq.) is amended--
                    (A) by redesignating part Z as part AA and 
                redesignating section 2601 as section 2701; and
                    (B) by inserting after part Y the following:

             ``PART Z--FORENSIC SCIENCES IMPROVEMENT GRANTS

``SEC. 2601. GRANT AUTHORIZATION.

    ``The Attorney General shall award grants to States in accordance 
with this part.

``SEC. 2602. APPLICATIONS.

    ``To request a grant under this part, a State shall submit to the 
Attorney General--
            ``(1) a certification that the State has developed a 
        consolidated State plan under a program described in section 
        2604(a), and a specific description of the manner in which the 
        grant will be used to carry out that plan;
            ``(2) a certification that any forensic science laboratory 
        system, medical examiner's office, or coroner's office in the 
        State that will receive any portion of the grant amount uses 
        generally accepted laboratory practices and procedures, 
        established by accrediting organizations; and
            ``(3) a specific description of any new facility to be 
        constructed as part of the program described in paragraph (1), 
        and the estimated costs of that facility, and a certification 
        that grant will not be used to fund more than 40 percent of the 
        total costs of that facility.

``SEC. 2603. ALLOCATION.

    ``(a) In General.--Of the amount made available to carry out this 
part in each fiscal year, each State that meets the requirements of 
section 2602 shall receive an amount that bears the same ratio to the 
total amount made available to carry out this part for that fiscal 
year  as the population of the State bears to the population of all 
States.
    ``(b) State Defined.--In this section, the term `State' means each 
of the several States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of 
Puerto Rico, the Virgin Islands, American Samoa, Guam, and the 
Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, except that--
            ``(1) for purposes of the allocation under this section, 
        American Samoa and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana 
        Islands shall be considered as 1 State; and
            ``(2) for purposes of paragraph (1), 67 percent of the 
        amount allocated shall be allocated to American Samoa, and 33 
        percent shall be allocated to the Commonwealth of the Northern 
        Mariana Islands.

``SEC. 2604. USE OF GRANTS.

    ``(a) In General.--A State that receives a grant under this part 
shall use the grant to carry out all or a substantial part of a program 
intended to improve the quality and timeliness of forensic science or 
medical examiner services in the State.
    ``(b) Permitted Categories of Funding.--Subject to subsections (c) 
and (d), a grant awarded under this part--
            ``(1) may only be used for program expenses relating to 
        facilities, personnel, computerization, equipment, supplies, 
        accreditation and certification, education, and training; and
            ``(2) may not be used for any general law enforcement or 
        nonforensic investigatory function.
    ``(c) Facilities Costs.--A grant awarded under this part may not be 
used to fund more than 40 percent of the total costs of any new 
facility constructed as part of a program described in subsection (a).
    ``(d) Administrative Costs.--Not more than 10 percent of the total 
amount of a grant awarded under this part may be used for 
administrative expenses.

``SEC. 2605. ADMINISTRATIVE PROVISIONS.

    ``(a) Regulations.--The Attorney General may promulgate such 
guidelines, regulations, and procedures as may be necessary to carry 
out this part, including guidelines, regulations, and procedures 
relating to the submission and review of applications for grants under 
section 2602.
    ``(b) Expenditure Records.--
            ``(1) Records.--Each State that receives a grant under this 
        part shall maintain such records as the Attorney General may 
        require to facilitate an effective audit relating to the 
        receipt of the grant, or the use of the grant amount.
            ``(2) Access.--The Attorney General and the Comptroller 
        General of the United States, or a designee thereof, shall have 
        access, for the purpose of audit and examination, to any book, 
        document, or record of a State that receives a grant under this 
        part, if, in the determination of the Attorney General, 
        Comptroller General, or designee thereof, the book, document, 
        or record is related to the receipt of the grant, or the use of 
        the grant amount.

``SEC. 2606. REPORTS.

    ``(a) Reports to Attorney General.--For each fiscal year for which 
a grant is awarded under this part, each State that receives such a 
grant shall submit to the Attorney General a report, at such time and 
in such manner as the Attorney General may reasonably require, which 
report shall include--
            ``(1) a summary and assessment of the program carried out 
        with the grant;
            ``(2) the average number of days between submission of a 
        sample to a forensic science laboratory or forensic science 
        laboratory system in that State and the delivery of test 
        results to the requesting office or agency; and
            ``(3) such other information as the Attorney General may 
        require.
    ``(b) Reports to Congress.--Not later than 90 days after the last 
day of each fiscal year for which 1 or more grants are awarded under 
this part, the Attorney General shall submit to the Speaker of the 
House of Representatives and the President pro tempore of the Senate, a 
report, which shall include--
            ``(1) the aggregate amount of grants awarded under this 
        part for that fiscal year; and
            ``(2) a summary of the information provided under 
        subsection (a).''.
            (2) Authorization of appropriations.--
                    (A) In general.--Section 1001(a) of title I of the 
                Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 
                U.S.C. 3753(a)) is amended by adding at the end the 
                following:
            ``(24) There are authorized to be appropriated to carry out 
        part Z, to remain available until expended--
                    ``(A) $55,000,000 for fiscal year 2001;
                    ``(B) $130,600,000 for fiscal year 2002;
                    ``(C) $204,600,000 for fiscal year 2003;
                    ``(D) $194,600,000 for fiscal year 2004;
                    ``(E) $87,600,000 for fiscal year 2005; and
                    ``(F) $65,600,000 for fiscal year 2006.''.
                    (B) Backlog elimination.--There is authorized to be 
                appropriated $30,000,000 for fiscal year 2001 for the 
                elimination of DNA convicted offender database sample 
                backlogs and for other related purposes, as provided in 
                the Departments of Commerce, Justice, and State, the 
                Judiciary, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 
                2001.
            (3) Table of contents.--Title I of the Omnibus Crime 
        Control and Safe Streets Act of 1968 (42 U.S.C. 3711 et seq.) 
        is amended by striking the table of contents.
                                 <all>

Pages: 1

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