PRIOR PRINTER'S NOS. 1678, 1764
PRINTER'S NO. 1828
THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF PENNSYLVANIA
SENATE BILL
No.
1142
Session of
2018
INTRODUCED BY BROWNE, HUGHES, MARTIN, COSTA, EICHELBERGER,
TOMLINSON, LANGERHOLC, VULAKOVICH, VOGEL, GORDNER, FONTANA,
ARGALL, SABATINA, BREWSTER, SCHWANK, RESCHENTHALER, BOSCOLA,
BLAKE, LEACH, YUDICHAK, FARNESE, HAYWOOD, TARTAGLIONE,
WILLIAMS, KILLION, RAFFERTY, MENSCH, REGAN, STEFANO,
BARTOLOTTA AND LAUGHLIN, APRIL 20, 2018
AS AMENDED ON THIRD CONSIDERATION, JUNE 5, 2018
AN ACT
Establishing the Safe2Say Program; and providing methods of
anonymous reporting concerning unsafe activities in schools.
The General Assembly of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania
hereby enacts as follows:
Section 1. Short title.
This act shall be known and may be cited as the Safe2Say Act.
Section 2. Intent.
The General Assembly finds and declares as follows:
(1) Over the past several years, school shootings have
become more frequent. The recent school shootings have shown
the need for robust information sharing and communication
between schools and law enforcement. The communication is
necessary to prevent school violence.
(2) It is vital that the Commonwealth take available
measures to create safe and welcoming school communities.
Providing students, teachers and communities with an
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anonymous reporting mechanism is a proven important tool in
creating safe and welcoming school communities.
(3) It is the intent of the General Assembly that the
Safe2Say Program be a one-stop shop for students, teachers
and community members to report behavior perceived to be
threatening to an individual or a school entity. Reports made
through the anonymous reporting system will be referred to
local schools, law enforcement and/or organizations.
(4) The intent of the General Assembly is for the
Safe2Say Program to supplement, not replace, 911 services.
The Safe2Say Program is intended to facilitate increased
communication between law enforcement, school districts and
organizations.
(5) It is not the intent of the General Assembly that
the Safe2Say Program be used as a disciplinary tool for
school employees. However, there may be instances where
information obtained through the program may be shared with
and used by school officials.
(6) The Safe2Say Program is not meant to be a tool for
law enforcement. However, there may be instances where
information obtained through the program may be shared with
and used by law enforcement.
Section 3. Definitions.
The following words and phrases when used in this act shall
have the meanings given to them in this section unless the
context clearly indicates otherwise:
"Attorney General." The Attorney General of the
Commonwealth.
"In camera review." An inspection of materials by the court,
in chambers, to determine what materials may be produced or
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otherwise provided to another party.
"Law enforcement agency." A police department of a city,
borough, incorporated town or township, the Pennsylvania State
Police, district attorneys' offices and the office.
"Office." The Office of Attorney General of the
Commonwealth.
"Program." The Safe2Say Program established under section
4(a).
"Record of the program." A record created by the office on a
tip received from the program.
"School entity." Any A school district, including a charter
school or, cyber charter school, private school, nonpublic
school, intermediate unit or area vocational-technical school
operating within this Commonwealth.
Section 4. Safe2Say Program.
(a) Establishment.--The Safe2Say Program is established
within the office.
(b) Administration.--The Attorney General shall administer
(B) ADMINISTRATION.--THE ATTORNEY GENERAL SHALL:
(1) ADMINISTER the program established under this act
pursuant to the requirements under subsection (c).; AND
(2) PROMULGATE REGULATIONS AND ADOPT ALL GUIDELINES
NECESSARY FOR THE ESTABLISHMENT OF THE PROGRAM AND
ADMINISTRATION OF THIS ACT, IN CONSULTATION WITH STATEWIDE
ORGANIZATIONS.
(c) Program requirements.--Beginning January 1, 14, 2019,
the program shall contain all of the following procedures BE
RESPONSIBLE FOR THE FOLLOWING:
(1) To ensure anonymous reporting concerning unsafe,
potentially harmful, dangerous, violent or criminal
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activities in a school entity or the threat of the activities
in a school entity.
(2) To establish protocols and procedures to promptly
notify the appropriate law enforcement agency via 911 centers
AND THE PENNSYLVANIA STATE POLICE when the program receives
an anonymous report of violent or criminal activities in a
school entity that poses an immediate threat of violence or
criminal activity.
(3) To ensure that the identity of the individual making
a report remains unknown to any person, including law
enforcement officers and employees of the office.
(4) To ensure that information obtained from an
individual making a report who voluntarily discloses his or
her identity and verifies that he or she is willing to be
identified may be shared with law enforcement officers,
employees of the office and school officials.
(5) To ensure that if the identity of an individual
making a report becomes known through a means other than
voluntary disclosure, the identity is not further disclosed.
(6) To establish procedures to promptly forward
information received by the program to the appropriate law
enforcement agency, school official or organization, as
determined by the office. The office may not be held liable
for investigation of a report made to the program following
confirmation of receipt of the report by the appropriate law
enforcement agency, school official or organization.
(7) To train or provide instruction to individuals,
including, but not limited to, emergency dispatch centers and
school entities, on appropriate awareness and response to the
program.
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(8) To provide program awareness and education materials
to school entities.
(9) To, in consultation with the Department of
Education, establish guidelines school entities may utilize
to respond to a report received from the program.
(10) To work with school entities, local law enforcement
agencies and organizations to identify each person to whom a
report from the program will be sent.
(d) School entity.--Each school entity shall develop
procedures for assessing and responding to reports received from
the program.
Section 5. Confidentiality.
(a) Disclosure.--A record created or obtained through the
implementation or operation of the program shall be
confidential. A person may not disclose a record of the program
except:
(1) To provide notice to the appropriate law enforcement
agency, school entity and organization in accordance with the
procedures established under section 4.
(2) Upon order of the court as provided in section 6 7.
(b) Right-to-Know.--A record of the program shall not be
(B) RIGHT-TO-KNOW.--A RECORD OF THE PROGRAM:
(1) SHALL NOT BE subject to the act of February 14, 2008
(P.L.6, No.3), known as the Right-to-Know Law.; AND
(2) DOES NOT CREATE A RECORD UNDER 18 PA.C.S. CH. 91
(RELATING TO CRIMINAL HISTORY RECORD INFORMATION).
(c) Penalty.--An individual who discloses a record in
violation of this section commits a misdemeanor of the third
degree.
(d) Administration.--The office shall promulgate regulations
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and adopt all guidelines necessary for the establishment of the
program and administration of this act, in consultation with
Statewide organizations.
(e) False reports.--
(1) A person commits a misdemeanor of the third degree
SECTION 6. FALSE REPORTS.
(A) PENALTY.--A PERSON COMMITS A MISDEMEANOR OF THE THIRD
DEGREE if the person knowingly or intentionally makes a false
report to the program.
(2) If a report filed with the program is determined to
(B) STUDENT RECORDS.--IF A REPORT FILED WITH THE PROGRAM IS
DETERMINED TO be a false report, information about the subject
of the false report shall not be made part of the subject
student's record.
Section 6 7. Judicial proceeding.
(a) General rule.--A person implementing, operating or
working for the program may not be compelled to produce a record
except pursuant to a court order. The motion of the Commonwealth
or a criminal defendant to the court shall be supported by an
affidavit establishing that the material contains evidence.
(b) In camera review.--Upon the Commonwealth's or criminal
defendant's motion under subsection (a), the court shall conduct
an ex parte in camera review of the record requested to be
produced under the motion of the Commonwealth or a criminal
defendant.
(c) Decision by court.--After a review of the record under
subsection (b), if the court determines that the record should
be released, the court may order the record to be produced to
the Commonwealth and criminal defendant pursuant to a protective
order that includes:
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(1) the redaction of the identity of the individual who
made the report; and
(2) limitations, if any, on the use of the materials.
(d) Sealed record.--After a decision by the court under
subsection (c), a record not produced to the Commonwealth or a
criminal defendant shall be sealed and preserved in the judicial
record of the court and may be made available on appeal.
(e) Return of record.--After the expiration of any appeal
period, the court shall return each record to the program.
(f) Standing.--The Attorney General shall have standing in
any action to support or oppose the disclosure of a record in
the custody of the program.
Section 7 8. Annual report.
(a) General rule.--No later than August 1 of each year, the
office shall prepare and submit a report to the chairperson and
minority chairperson of the Appropriations Committee of the
Senate, the chairperson and minority chairperson of the
Appropriations Committee of the House of Representatives, the
chairperson and minority chairperson of the Education Committee
of the Senate and the chairperson and minority chairperson of
the Education Committee of the House of Representatives.
(b) Contents of report.--The report shall, at a minimum,
include:
(1) The number of reports received for the previous
school year.
(2) The total number of reports received since the
program began.
(3) A breakdown of the reports by type.
(4) A breakdown of the method by which the report was
received.
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(5) A breakdown of the report by school entity.
(6) The total cost to operate the program, including
staffing costs, administrative costs and support costs.
(7) The total number of false reports received.
(8) Any other information the Attorney General deems
appropriate.
Section 8 9. Effective date.
This act shall take effect immediately.
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