ASSEMBLY APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE

 

STATEMENT TO

 

ASSEMBLY, No. 2429

 

STATE OF NEW JERSEY

 

DATED: FEBRUARY 3, 1997

 

      The Assembly Appropriations Committee reports favorably Assembly Bill No. 2429.

      Assembly Bill No. 2429 requires employees at State facilities for the mentally ill and developmentally disabled to undergo criminal history record background checks at least every two years. Currently, employees at these facilities are only required to undergo the background checks prior to employment.

      This bill is one of several legislative initiatives recommended in the final report of the Senate Task Force on Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital issued in June, 1996.

      

FISCAL IMPACT:

      The cost of conducting a federal and State criminal history background check is estimated at $50 per employee. There are approximately 14,400 full and part time staff employed at the State psychiatric hospitals and developmental centers, so checks on all employees would cost about $720,000, or $360,000 annually if conducted over the course of two years. Costs associated with conducting criminal history background checks are claimable as legitimate administrative costs in determining federal Medicaid reimbursement rates for such State facilities; however, the amount of federal Medicaid revenues the State might realize cannot be determined.