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A02977 Memo:

NEW YORK STATE ASSEMBLY
MEMORANDUM IN SUPPORT OF LEGISLATION
submitted in accordance with Assembly Rule III, Sec 1(f)
 
BILL NUMBER: A2977
 
SPONSOR: Simon
  TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the education law and the state finance law, in relation to creating a firearm violence research insti- tute; and making an appropriation therefor   PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: to establish a center for research into firearm-related violence.   SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section 239-c Section 2. The state finance law is amended by adding section 97-j   JUSTIFICATION: Little is known about the factors which give rise to firearm violence and its prevention. Firearm violence and its physical and social impacts are a significant public health and safety problem and becoming more so. Nevertheless, funding for research and prevention through the Center for Disease Control and prevention was eliminated by Congress in 1996. Efforts to restore that funding have been unsuccessful because of active well financed special interest groups. Unlike other major health and social concerns such as motor vehicle accidents, cancer, heart disease, and tobacco which have received expanded research, too little research has been done on firearm violence. Establishing a center for firearm violence research in New York State will help ensure a long-term effort towards understanding and preventing future firearm related violence against New Yorkers.   PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None   FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: to be determined   EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have become a law; provided, however, that effective immediately, the action, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effective date is authorized and directed to be made and completed by the commissioner of education on or before such effective date.
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A02977 Text:



 
                STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________
 
                                          2977
 
                               2017-2018 Regular Sessions
 
                   IN ASSEMBLY
 
                                    January 23, 2017
                                       ___________
 
        Introduced  by M. of A. SIMON -- read once and referred to the Committee
          on Higher Education
 
        AN ACT to amend the education law and the state finance law, in relation
          to creating a firearm  violence  research  institute;  and  making  an
          appropriation therefor
 
          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
 
     1    Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new section  239-c
     2  to read as follows:
     3    §  239-c.  New  York  state  firearm  violence  research institute. 1.
     4  Institute formation and goals.  The  New  York  state  firearm  violence
     5  research institute, hereinafter the "institute", is hereby created with-
     6  in the university. The purposes of the institute shall include:
     7    (a) advising the governor, governmental agencies, the regents, and the
     8  legislature on matters relating to firearm violence in New York state;
     9    (b)  fostering, pursuing and sponsoring collaborative firearm violence
    10  research;
    11    (c) increasing understanding by establishing and reporting on what  is
    12  known and what is not known about firearm violence of the state;
    13    (d)  identifying  priority  needs  for  firearm  violence research and
    14  inventory work within New York that currently are not receiving adequate
    15  attention, and identifying public or  private  entities  that  are  best
    16  situated  to  address such needs, thereby leading to better coordination
    17  of firearm violence research efforts in the state;
    18    (e) promoting  awareness  of  existing  and  new  sources  of  firearm
    19  violence  information and firearm violence while educating elected offi-
    20  cials, governmental agencies, and the general public on firearm violence
    21  issues through such means as it may determine;
    22    (f) organizing and sponsoring meetings on firearm violence topics;
    23    (g) encouraging the establishment of networks of collaborating experts
    24  engaged in related aspects of firearm violence research;
 
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD04693-01-7

        A. 2977                             2
 
     1    (h) raising sensitivity to firearm violence concerns among  state  and
     2  local  government  agencies, and serving as a forum for enhanced intera-
     3  gency information sharing and cooperation;
     4    (i)  recommending  priority activities for funding through the firearm
     5  violence research fund, created pursuant to  section  ninety-seven-j  of
     6  the state finance law;
     7    (j) working on a continuing basis with policymakers in the legislature
     8  and  state  agencies  to  identify,  implement,  and evaluate innovative
     9  firearm violence prevention policies and programs;
    10    (k) recruiting and providing specialized  training  opportunities  for
    11  new  researchers,  including experienced investigators in related fields
    12  who are beginning work on firearm violence, young investigators who have
    13  completed their education, postdoctoral scholars, doctoral students, and
    14  undergraduates;
    15    (l) supplementing its own research by  administering  a  small  grants
    16  program  for  research  on  firearm  violence, funded through a research
    17  account in the firearm violence research fund pursuant to section  nine-
    18  ty-seven-j of the state finance law. All research funds shall be awarded
    19  on  the  basis of scientific merit as determined by an open, competitive
    20  peer review process that  assures  objectivity,  consistency,  and  high
    21  quality. All qualified investigators, regardless of institutional affil-
    22  iation, shall have equal access and opportunity to compete for the funds
    23  in  such  research  account.  The  institute  shall require the use of a
    24  rigorous peer review process for the selection of grants  awarded  under
    25  this program and shall be modeled after the process used by the national
    26  institutes of health in its grantmaking process; and
    27    (m) providing copies of their research publications to the legislature
    28  and  to  agencies supplying data used in the conduct of such research as
    29  soon as is practicable following publication.
    30    2. Research. The institute shall foster, pursue,  and  sponsor  basic,
    31  translational, and transformative research, field studies, and all other
    32  such activities to research:
    33    (a)  the nature of firearm violence, including individual and societal
    34  determinants of risk for involvement in firearm violence, whether  as  a
    35  victim or a perpetrator;
    36    (b)  the  individual,  community, and societal consequences of firearm
    37  violence;
    38    (c) the prevention and treatment of firearm violence at  the  individ-
    39  ual, community, and societal levels; and
    40    (d) the effectiveness of existing laws and policies intended to reduce
    41  firearm violence, including the criminal misuse of firearms, and efforts
    42  to promote the responsible ownership and use of firearms.
    43    3.  Education  and  information transfer programs. The institute shall
    44  foster the collection, transfer, and  application  of  firearm  violence
    45  information in the state by:
    46    (a)  fostering  access,  compatibility,  interchange, and synthesis of
    47  data about firearm violence maintained by public entities, academic  and
    48  research institutions, and private organizations;
    49    (b) employing advanced technology to coordinate for ease of use of the
    50  scattered firearm violence resources of the state; and
    51    (c) supporting the preparation and publication of interpretative works
    52  that draw upon firearm violence resources.
    53    4.  Quinquennial  reports.  The  institute  shall prepare and submit a
    54  report on or before January first, two thousand eighteen and every  five
    55  years thereafter to the governor and the legislature describing programs
    56  undertaken  or  sponsored  by  the  institute,  the  status of knowledge

        A. 2977                             3
 
     1  regarding the state's firearm violence, and research needs related ther-
     2  eto.
     3    5.  Executive committee. The institute shall be guided by an executive
     4  committee. Members of the committee shall be  from  varying  backgrounds
     5  with members selected from the scientific community, academic community,
     6  as  well  as  from government service.   Such committee shall consist of
     7  seventeen members including the commissioner, the commissioner of crimi-
     8  nal justice services, the commissioner of health, the chancellor of  the
     9  university  or  their designees, seven at large members appointed by the
    10  governor, one of whom shall be chairperson, two members appointed by the
    11  temporary president of the senate, one member appointed by the  minority
    12  leader of the senate, two members appointed by the speaker of the assem-
    13  bly  and  one  member  appointed by the minority leader of the assembly.
    14  Appointed members shall serve for a term of three years,  provided  that
    15  such members may be reappointed. The executive committee shall:
    16    (a)  adopt  policies,  procedures, and criteria governing the programs
    17  and operations of the institute;
    18    (b) recommend to the governor and legislature appropriate  actions  to
    19  deal with firearm violence within the state;
    20    (c)  develop  and  implement  the  research, education and information
    21  transfer programs of the institute;
    22    (d) identify and rate proposals for firearm violence research;
    23    (e) submit to the director of the budget, and the chairpersons of  the
    24  senate  finance  committee  and the assembly ways and means committee on
    25  the first day of October, two thousand seventeen and on or before August
    26  first each year thereafter, a budget  request  for  the  expenditure  of
    27  funds  available  from  the  firearm  violence  research  fund,  for the
    28  purposes established by section ninety-seven-j of the state finance law;
    29  and
    30    (f) meet publicly at least twice a year. The  committee  shall  widely
    31  disseminate  notice  of  its  meetings  at least two weeks prior to each
    32  meeting. The commissioners on the executive committee and the chancellor
    33  of the university shall aid in such dissemination.
    34    6. Scientific working group. The executive committee shall  appoint  a
    35  scientific  working  group composed of not more than fifteen individuals
    36  representing governmental agencies, academic or  research  institutions,
    37  educational  organizations,  the firearm industry and related non-profit
    38  organizations. Members of the scientific working group shall have  know-
    39  ledge  and  expertise in firearm violence research and shall serve for a
    40  term of three years, provided, however that members may  be  reappointed
    41  for more than one term at the discretion of the executive committee. The
    42  scientific  working  group  shall  make recommendations to the executive
    43  committee with respect to:
    44    (a) the identification of priority firearm violence research needs  in
    45  the state;
    46    (b)  the  development  and implementation of the institute's research,
    47  education, and information transfer programs;
    48    (c) the allocation and expenditure of funds from the firearm  violence
    49  research  fund  created  pursuant to section ninety-seven-j of the state
    50  finance law; and
    51    (d) identification  and  rating  of  proposals  for  firearm  violence
    52  research.
    53    7.  Institute  director. The institute shall have a director who shall
    54  be appointed by the executive committee and shall after  appointment  be
    55  an  employee of the state university. The institute director shall serve
    56  at the pleasure of the executive committee. The institute director shall

        A. 2977                             4
 
     1  serve as chief administrative officer of the institute and  provide  the
     2  necessary support for the executive committee.
     3    8. Compensation. The members of the executive committee and the scien-
     4  tific  working  group  shall  serve without additional compensation, but
     5  shall be eligible to receive reimbursement for their actual  and  neces-
     6  sary  expenses  from  the  firearm violence research fund established by
     7  section ninety-seven-j of  the  state  finance  law,  provided  however,
     8  members  of  the  executive  committee  representing  state agencies may
     9  receive reimbursement for their actual and necessary expenses from their
    10  respective agencies. Members of the executive committee  and  scientific
    11  working  group  shall  be considered state employees for the purposes of
    12  sections seventeen and nineteen of the public officers law.
    13    9. Memorandum of understanding.  The  department,  the  department  of
    14  health,  the  department of motor vehicles, and the division of criminal
    15  justice services shall enter into a written memorandum of  understanding
    16  to  facilitate  the  appropriate  implementation of the firearm violence
    17  research institute and the goals, responsibilities, and programs  estab-
    18  lished by this section.
    19    §  2. The state finance law is amended by adding a new section 97-j to
    20  read as follows:
    21    § 97-j. Firearm violence research fund. 1. There is hereby established
    22  in the joint custody of the state comptroller and  the  commissioner  of
    23  taxation and finance a fund to be known as the firearm violence research
    24  fund.
    25    2.  The  firearm  violence  research  fund shall consist of all moneys
    26  credited or transferred thereto from any other fund or source, including
    27  any federal, state, or private funds, pursuant to law for  the  purposes
    28  of firearm violence research.
    29    3. Moneys in the firearm violence research fund may be invested by the
    30  comptroller  pursuant to section ninety-eight-a of this article, and any
    31  income received by the comptroller shall be used  for  the  purposes  of
    32  such fund.
    33    4.  The  moneys  held in or credited to the fund shall be expended for
    34  the purposes set forth in this section, and may not be  interchanged  or
    35  commingled with any other account or fund but may be commingled with any
    36  other fund or account for investment purposes.
    37    5.  Moneys  in the firearm violence research fund, following appropri-
    38  ation by the legislature, shall be available to  the  New  York  firearm
    39  violence  research  institute  for firearm violence research, education,
    40  and information transfer programs as set forth in  section  two  hundred
    41  thirty-nine-c of the education law.
    42    §  3.  The sum of two million dollars ($2,000,000), or so much thereof
    43  may be  necessary,  is  hereby  appropriated  to  the  firearm  violence
    44  research  fund  out  of  any moneys in the state treasury in the general
    45  fund, for administration of the New York state firearm violence research
    46  institute.
    47    § 4. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day  after  it  shall
    48  have  become  a  law; provided, however, that effective immediately, the
    49  action, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary  for
    50  the  implementation  of this act on its effective date is authorized and
    51  directed to be made and completed by the commissioner of education on or
    52  before such effective date.
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