The Bipartisan Gun Control Bill of 2022 (Bipartisan Safer Communities Act)
After receiving support on a procedural vote from 15 Senate Republicans, the bill is expected to easily become law.
Senate Republicans who supported the bill include: Roy Blunt (MO), Richard Burr (NC), Shelley Moore-Capito (WV), Bill Cassidy (LA), Susan Collins (ME), John Cornyn (TX), Joni Ernst (IA), Lindsey Graham (SC), Mitch McConnell (KY), Lisa Murkowski (AK), Rob Portman (OH), Mitt Romney (UT), Thom Tillis (NC), Todd Young (IN), Pat Toomey (PA).
$40 million for expansion of Community Mental Health Services Demonstration Programs
These demonstration programs were originally introduced by the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014
Secretary of Health and Human Services Guidance on Medicaid/CHIP provided Telehealth services
$58 million for HHS/Department of Education guidance/technical assistance on delivery of Medicaid/CHIP aid in schools
The Secretary of Health and Human Services and Secretary of Education will establish a Technical Assistance Center to assist/expand State Medicaid agencies and manage state Medicaid payments
$50 million in grants for expanding Medicaid/CHIP school-based services
$10 million for two years of reviewing state implementation of school Medicaid early/periodic screening, diagnostic, and treatment services
$1 million per year every year after 2024
$155 million for Pediatric Mental Health Care Access Grants
Additional requirements for FFL firearms sales to persons under 21
Federal Firearms Licensees conducting a background check must:
- Immediately contact the criminal history repository or juvenile justice information system
- the appropriate state custodian of mental health adjudication records (this measure sunsets in 2032)
- a local law enforcement agency where the buyer resides
Licensees must inform the buyer within 3 business days whether cause exists for further investigation (this measure sunsets in 2032)
Licensees must inform the buyer within 10 business days whether or not they are disqualified from purchasing
Each state and federal agency responsible for submission of disqualifying records must submit an annual report on removal of records that no longer prevent an indiviual from lawfully acquiring or possessing a firearm
Redefined standards for being "engaged in the business" for FFL dealers, redefinition of "terrorism"
In Sec 921 of title 18 US Code, the words "with the principal objective of livelihood and profit" are replaced with the words "to predominantly earn a profit"
The section also defines purposes of "terrorism" that dealers would be engaging in.
"Terrorism" is defined as acticity directed against United States Persons which:
- is committed by an individual who is not a national or permanent resident alien of the United States
- involves violent acts or acts dangerous to human life which would be a criminal violation if committed within the jurisdiction of the United States
- is intended to intimidate or coerce a civilian population, to influence the policy of a government by intimidation or coercion; or to affect the conduct of a government by assassination or kidnapping
Use of federal funds for "red flag" laws
Byrne Grants may be used for implementation of "state crisis intervention programs", including "extreme risk protection order programs"
Red flag law programs must include:
- pre-deprivation and post-deprivation due process rights, the right to an in-person hearing, an unbiased adjudicator (no standards listed), the right to know opposing evidence, the right to present evidence, and the right to confront adverse witnesses
- the right to be represented by counsel at no expense to the government
- pre-deprivation and post-deprivation heightened evidentiary standards and proof
- penalties for abuse of the program (no specifics listed)
Enhanced straw purchasing penalties
15 years and a fine for making a straw purchase for a prohibited individual or someone who intends to use, carry, possess, or sell or otherwise dispose of the firearm in firtherance of a felony, a Federal crime of terrorism, or a drug trafficking crime
25 years and a fine for making a straw purchase with the knowledge reasonable cause to believe that the firearm will be used to commit a felony, a Federal crime of terrorism, or a drug trafficking crime
Enhanced firearm trafficking penalties
15 years and/or a fine for shipping, transporting, transferring, causing to be transported, or otherwise disposing of any firearm to another person in or otherwise affecting interstate commerce if such person knows or has reasonable cause to believe that the use, carrying, or possession of a firearm by the recipient would constitute a felony
Forfeiture/Fines associated with Straw Purchasing/Trafficking charges
Prohibition on firearms or ammunition transfers to agents of drug cartels
Most likely a response to President Obama's "Fast and Furious" program, which "walked" guns to cartels without tracking them. Fast and Furious firearms were eventually used to murder a Border Patrol agent.
Allowing FFL dealers to use NICS background checks for current or prospective employees
Allowing FFL dealers to use FBI stolen firearm databases
$5 million for the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATFE) anti-straw purchase education program
Local LEO reimbursement for assistance to DHS-HSI in preventing illegal trafficking
Rule of Construction prohibiting establishment of a federal firearm registry
Widened definition of "domestic violence" for disqualifying individuals from possessing/purchasing firearms
Misdemeanor crimes of domestic violence may now be prosecuted against a person in a "current or recent former dating relationship with the victim". This is typically referred to as the "boyfriend loophole".
"Dating relationship" is defined as a a relationship between individuals who have or have recently had a continuing serious relationship of a romantic or intimate nature"
A "dating relationship" is determined by:
- the length of the relationship
- the nature of the relationship
- the frequency and type of interaction between the individuals
"A casual acquaintanceship or ordinary fraternization in a business or social context does not constitute a dating relationship"
This law is not retroactively applied to previous convictions. Persons convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence under "dating relationships" definitions may regain their firearm rights after 5 years under certain conditions.
Extension of moratorium on implementation of rule relating to eliminating the anti-kickback statute Safe Harbor protection for prescription drug rebates
Unspecified increase to the Medicare Improvement Fund
The Luke and Alex School Safety Act of 2022
This law establishes a federal Clearinghouse on school safety evidence-based practices (spearheaded by the Secretary of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Secretary of Health and Human Services, the Secretary of Education, and the Attorney General).
The clearinghouse will identify and publish best practices for school safety and ensure schools are utilizing them. The Homeland Security Secretary will utilize the clearinghouse resources to assist and train educational/law enforcement agencies on the implementation of best practices.
The law also includes a federal grant program for its execution. It includes a prohibition on federally developed, mandated, or endorsed curriculum.
Amendment on ESEA funding prohibiting use for arming or training anyone in the use of firearms
$100 million for FBI salaries and expenses related to NICS
$1.4 billion for State and Local Law Enforcement Assistance (Office of Justice Programs)
$750 million of which shall be for Byrne Grants (those that this bill authorizes for use in establishing red flag laws)
$200 million of which shall be for Bureau of Justice Assistance grants for STOP School Violence Act of 2018 purposes
$200 million of which shall be for grants to states for upgrading criminal and mental health records
$250 million of which shall be for the community violence intervention and prevention initiative
$100 million for Community Oriented Policing Services Programs
Community Oriented Policing is a United Nations-supported concept that encourages collaboration with non-profits, having police officers live in the neighborhoods they patrol, and using arrests as a last resort
$800 million for Dept of Health and Human Services "Health Surveillance and Program Support"
$250 million of which shall be for the community mental health services block grant program
$40 million of which shall be for the National Child Traumatic Stress Network
$240 million of which shall be for Project AWARE activities and services
$120 million of which shall be for Mental Health Awareness Training
$150 million of which shall be for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
$190 million for the Public Health and Social Services Emergency Fund
$60 million of which shall be for primary care training and enhancement
$80 million of which shall be for pediatric mental health care access
$50 million of which shall be for delivering Medicaid services in schools