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House of Representatives
Session of 2013 - 2014 Regular Session


Posted: February 25, 2013 03:36 PM
From: Representative Tim Krieger
To: All House members
Subject: Request for Cosponsorship-Eliminate Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS) and Use the National Instant Check System (NICS)
In the near future, I intend to introduce legislation which will eliminate the Pennsylvania Instant Check System (PICS) and switch to using the National Instant Check System (NICS). The PICS system duplicates the background check which is already completed when a NICS check is conducted and as a result wastes taxpayer dollars.

In a report issued by the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee in 2006 and updated in 2011, about two-thirds of PICS revenues come from the General Fund. With the elimination of PICS, the revenues from the General Fund will be available to fund other programs throughout the Commonwealth. The switchover from PICS to NICS was one of the options discussed by the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee. While the committee did note that this may diminish the comprehensiveness of the background check, I do not believe this is still the case based on recent changes to the NICS system.

As of last year, system changes to NICS have added the capacity to check for state prohibitors, i.e., those prohibitions based solely on state law. This was something previously lacking in the NICS system.

I believe that my legislation will help streamline the background check process and provide substantial savings to the Commonwealth by eliminating duplicative processes.

Introduced as HB921