Text: H.R.838 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

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Introduced in House (01/29/2019)

 
[Congressional Bills 116th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[H.R. 838 Introduced in House (IH)]

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116th CONGRESS
  1st Session
                                H. R. 838

  To develop a national strategy to prevent targeted violence through 
  behavioral threat assessment and management, and for other purposes.


_______________________________________________________________________


                    IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

                            January 29, 2019

Mr. Babin (for himself and Mrs. Demings) introduced the following bill; 
          which was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary

_______________________________________________________________________

                                 A BILL


 
  To develop a national strategy to prevent targeted violence through 
  behavioral threat assessment and management, and for other purposes.

    Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the 
United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``Threat Assessment, Prevention, and 
Safety Act of 2019''.

SEC. 2. SENSE OF CONGRESS.

    It is the sense of Congress that--
            (1) incidents of targeted violence are impacting our Nation 
        frequently and indiscriminately;
            (2) a collaborative, multi-disciplinary, and multi-
        jurisdictional behavioral threat assessment and management 
        process on a Federal, State, local, and Tribal level 
        complements the development of better methods for strategically 
        preventing targeted violence in communities, including schools;
            (3) the United States has the capability to rapidly develop 
        behavioral threat assessment and management guidelines and best 
        practices;
            (4) the United States should encourage the sharing of such 
        guidelines and best practices for streamlined and cohesive use 
        across the United States;
            (5) establishing such guidelines and best practices is an 
        important step toward preventing targeted violence;
            (6) such guidelines and best practices should account for 
        different needs of communities across the United States; and
            (7) it is in the national security interest of the United 
        States to develop such guidelines and best practices.

SEC. 3. DEFINITIONS.

    In this Act:
            (1) Appropriate committees of congress.--The term 
        ``appropriate committees of Congress'' means the Committee on 
        Appropriations, the Committee on Homeland Security and the 
        Committee on the Judiciary of the House of Representatives and 
        the Committee on Appropriations, the Committee on Homeland 
        Security and Governmental Affairs, and the Committee on the 
        Judiciary of the Senate.
            (2) Behavioral threat assessment and management.--The term 
        ``behavioral threat assessment and management'' means the 
        systematic and evidence-based process of--
                    (A) identifying individuals who are exhibiting 
                patterns of concerning behavior that indicate an 
                interest, motive, intention, or capability of carrying 
                out an act of violence;
                    (B) investigating and gathering information from 
                multiple sources to assess whether an individual 
                described in subparagraph (A) poses a threat, based on 
                articulable facts; and
                    (C) the subsequent management of such a threat, if 
                necessary.
            (3) Definitions related to certain educational terms.--The 
        terms ``early childhood education program'', ``elementary 
        school'', ``local educational agency'', ``secondary school'', 
        and ``State educational agency'' have the meanings given those 
        terms in section 8101 of the Elementary and Secondary Education 
        Act of 1965 (20 U.S.C. 7801).
            (4) Educational entities.--The term ``educational 
        entities'' means--
                    (A) a State educational agency;
                    (B) a local educational agency;
                    (C) an institution of higher education;
                    (D) an elementary school or secondary school;
                    (E) an early childhood education program; or
                    (F) a postsecondary vocational institution.
            (5) Fusion center.--The term ``fusion center'' has the 
        meaning given the term in section 210A(j)(1) of the Homeland 
        Security Act of 2002 (6 U.S.C. 124h(j)(1)).
            (6) Institution of higher education.--The term 
        ``institution of higher education'' has the meaning given the 
        term in section 101 of the Higher Education Act of 1965 (20 
        U.S.C. 1001).
            (7) Mental health service professional.--The term ``mental 
        health service professional'' has the meaning given the term in 
        section 799B of the Public Health Service Act (42 U.S.C. 295p).
            (8) Nongovernmental organization.--The term 
        ``nongovernmental organization'' means an organization that is 
        not a Federal, State, or local governmental agency.
            (9) Postsecondary vocational institution.--The term 
        ``postsecondary vocational institution'' has the meaning given 
        such term in section 102(c) of the Higher Education Act of 1965 
        (20 U.S.C. 1002(c)).
            (10) Secretary.--The term ``Secretary'' means the Secretary 
        of Homeland Security.
            (11) State.--The term ``State'' means any State of the 
        United States, the District of Columbia, the Commonwealth of 
        Puerto Rico, the United States Virgin Islands, Guam, American 
        Samoa, and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.
            (12) Targeted violence.--The term ``targeted violence'' 
        means any incident of predatory violence with respect to which 
        an identifiable individual or group focuses an attack on a 
        particular target.

SEC. 4. ESTABLISHMENT OF A JOINT BEHAVIORAL THREAT ASSESSMENT AND 
              MANAGEMENT TASK FORCE.

    (a) In General.--Not later than 30 days after the date of enactment 
of this Act, the Secretary shall establish within the Department of 
Homeland Security a Joint Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management 
Task Force (referred to in this Act as the ``Task Force'').
    (b) Development of National Strategy.--
            (1) In general.--It shall be the duty of the Task Force to 
        provide recommendations to the appropriate committees of 
        Congress and the Secretary on the development and 
        implementation of a national strategy for preventing targeted 
        violence through behavioral threat assessment and management 
        (referred to in this Act as the ``national strategy'').
            (2) Requirement.--In developing the national strategy 
        required under paragraph (1), the Task Force shall take into 
        account the different needs of communities across the United 
        States.
            (3) Rule of construction.--The national strategy developed 
        under this subsection shall not be construed to be a national 
        standard.
    (c) Membership.--
            (1) Composition.--
                    (A) In general.--The Task Force shall be composed 
                of not more than 24 members as follows:
                            (i) The Secretary or a designee with a 
                        position classified at GS-15 or above.
                            (ii) Not more than 2 representatives of a 
                        nongovernmental organization that is determined 
                        by the Secretary to have expertise in 
                        behavioral threat assessment and management.
                            (iii) Not more than 2 mental health service 
                        professionals with clinical experience who are 
                        determined by the Secretary to have expertise 
                        in behavioral threat assessment and management.
                            (iv) One State or local prosecutor who is 
                        determined by the Secretary to have expertise 
                        in behavioral threat assessment and management.
                            (v) Not more than 2 representatives from an 
                        educational entity who are determined by the 
                        Secretary to have expertise in behavioral 
                        threat assessment and management.
                            (vi) Not more than 2 representatives from 
                        local behavioral threat assessment and 
                        management units who are determined by the 
                        Secretary to have expertise in behavioral 
                        threat assessment and management.
                            (vii) Not more than 2 representatives from 
                        State behavioral threat assessment and 
                        management units who are determined by the 
                        Secretary to have expertise in behavioral 
                        threat assessment and management.
                            (viii) One expert in behavioral threat 
                        assessment and management appointed by the head 
                        of each of the following entities:
                                    (I) The National Threat Assessment 
                                Center of the United States Secret 
                                Service.
                                    (II) The Protective Intelligence 
                                and Assessment Division of the United 
                                States Secret Service.
                                    (III) The Behavioral Analysis Unit-
                                1 of the Critical Incident Response 
                                Group of the Federal Bureau of 
                                Investigation.
                                    (IV) The Joint Terrorism Task Force 
                                of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
                                    (V) The Office of Protective 
                                Intelligence of the United States 
                                Marshals Service of the Department of 
                                Justice.
                                    (VI) The Office on Violence Against 
                                Women of the Department of Justice.
                                    (VII) The Naval Criminal 
                                Investigative Service of the Department 
                                of the Navy.
                                    (VIII) The Threat Assessment 
                                Section of the United States Capitol 
                                Police.
                                    (IX) The Department of Education.
                                    (X) The Department of Health and 
                                Human Services.
                                    (XI) The Department of Veterans 
                                Affairs.
                                    (XII) The Office of Protective 
                                Intelligence Investigations of the 
                                Diplomatic Security Service of the 
                                Department of State.
                    (B) Representation.--If a member of the Task Force 
                has expertise in more than 1 of the subject matter 
                areas described in subparagraph (A), the member shall 
                be considered a representative of only 1 subject matter 
                area.
            (2) Chairperson.--The Secretary shall appoint a chairperson 
        of the Task Force.
            (3) Consultation.--The Task Force may, as the chairperson 
        determines necessary, consult with experts in behavioral threat 
        assessment and management from Federal, State, local, and 
        Tribal government agencies and private entities.
            (4) Term of membership.--
                    (A) Term of members.--Members of the Task Force 
                shall serve until the head of the respective entity of 
                the member appoints a new representative to the Task 
                Force.
                    (B) Term of chairperson.--The chairperson shall 
                serve until the Secretary appoints a new chairperson.
            (5) Member compensation.--Members of the Task Force may not 
        receive additional pay, allowances, or benefits by reason of 
        their service on the Task Force.
    (d) Operating Rules and Procedures.--
            (1) Rules and procedures.--Any member of the Task Force may 
        propose to develop or change existing operating rules and 
        procedures of the Task Force consistent with the functions of 
        the Task Force. Any change to such operating rules and 
        procedures shall be adopted upon a majority vote of the Task 
        Force.
            (2) Findings and solutions.--The Task Force shall adopt 
        recommendations for the implementation of the national strategy 
        only upon a majority vote of the Task Force.
            (3) Voting.--Each member of the Task Force shall have one 
        vote.
            (4) Quorum.--Two-thirds of the members of the Task Force 
        shall be present to constitute a quorum, but a lesser number 
        may hold meetings.
    (e) Staff Director and Staff.--
            (1) Staff director.--The chairperson may appoint a staff 
        director, who shall be paid at a rate not to exceed the rate of 
        basic pay for level IV of the Executive Schedule under section 
        5315 of title 5, United States Code.
            (2) Staff.--The staff director may appoint not more than 3 
        additional staff personnel.
            (3) Applicability of certain civil service laws.--The staff 
        of the Task Force shall be appointed subject to the provisions 
        of title 5, United States Code, governing appointments in the 
        competitive service, and shall be paid in accordance with the 
        provisions of chapter 51 and subchapter III of chapter 53 of 
        that title relating to classification and General Schedule pay 
        rates.
            (4) Experts and consultants.--The Task Force and the staff 
        director, acting with the approval of the Task Force, may 
        procure temporary and intermittent services pursuant to section 
        3109(b) of title 5, United States Code.
            (5) Staff of federal agencies.--Upon the request of the 
        Secretary, the head of any Federal department or agency may 
        detail, on a reimbursable basis, any of the personnel of such 
        Federal department or agency to the Task Force to assist it in 
        carrying out the duties of the Task Force under this section.
    (f) Powers of the Task Force.--Any member of the Task Force may, if 
authorized by the Task Force, take any action which the Task Force is 
authorized to take by this section.
    (g) Obtaining Official Data.--Subject to applicable privacy laws 
and regulations, the Task Force may secure directly from any Federal 
department or agency information necessary to enable it to carry out 
the duties of the Task Force under this section. Upon request of the 
chairperson of the Task Force, the head of such Federal department or 
agency shall furnish such information to the Task Force.
    (h) Administrative Support Services.--Upon the request of the Task 
Force, the Administrator of General Services shall provide to the Task 
Force, on a reimbursable basis, the administrative support services 
necessary for the Task Force to carry out the duties of the Task Force 
under this section.
    (i) Contract Authority.--To the extent and in the amounts made 
available in advance in appropriations Acts, the Task Force may 
contract with and compensate State, local, and Tribal government 
agencies and private entities or persons for services necessary to 
carry out the duties of the Task Force under this section.
    (j) Report.--Not later than 120 days after the date of enactment of 
this Act, the Task Force shall submit to the appropriate committees of 
Congress and the Secretary a report on recommendations related to the 
national strategy, including recommendations for the development and 
implementation of the national strategy.
    (k) Dissolution of Task Force.--The Task Force shall terminate 180 
days after the date of enactment of this Act.
    (l) Authorization of Appropriations.--There are authorized to be 
appropriated to carry out this section not more than $1,000,000 for 
fiscal year 2020.

SEC. 5. CONTENTS OF NATIONAL STRATEGY RECOMMENDATIONS.

    The national strategy recommendations required to be provided by 
the Task Force under section 4(j) shall include each of the following:
            (1) Existing infrastructure plans.--Recommendations 
        relating to the most effective use of existing Federal, State, 
        local, and Tribal infrastructure, workforce, and experience, 
        including--
                    (A) the use of personnel, communication channels, 
                and information sharing capabilities of fusion centers; 
                and
                    (B) a model behavioral threat assessment and 
                management process.
            (2) Unit support program.--Recommendations relating to a 
        Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management Unit Support 
        Program, which shall--
                    (A) assist Federal, State, local, Tribal government 
                agencies and private entities in the implementation of 
                community-based, multi-disciplinary, and multi-
                jurisdictional behavioral threat assessment and 
                management units;
                    (B) consult on real-world complex behavioral threat 
                assessment and management cases or programs;
                    (C) promote coordination and information sharing 
                among Federal, State, local, and Tribal government 
                agencies and private entities with protective or public 
                safety responsibilities; and
                    (D) support collaboration between Federal, State, 
                local, and Tribal government agency behavioral threat 
                assessment and management units.
            (3) Training program.--Recommendations relating to a 
        Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management Training Program, 
        which may train officers and employees of Federal, State, 
        local, and Tribal government agencies and private entities in 
        community-based, multi-disciplinary, and multi-jurisdictional 
        behavioral threat assessment and management, including--
                    (A) integrated operations;
                    (B) information sharing among Federal, State, 
                local, and Tribal government agencies and private 
                entities with protective or public safety 
                responsibilities; and
                    (C) disseminating published evidence-based research 
                materials on targeted violence prevention through 
                behavioral threat assessment and management.
            (4) School violence prevention program.--Recommendations 
        relating to a Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management 
        School Violence Prevention Program for educational entities, 
        which shall--
                    (A) train and support a multi-disciplinary and 
                multi-jurisdictional behavioral threat assessment and 
                management process, including the coordination of 
                information sharing;
                    (B) consult on real-world complex behavioral threat 
                assessment and management cases or programs;
                    (C) support collaboration between educational 
                entity behavioral threat assessment and management 
                units; and
                    (D) disseminate to educational entities published 
                research materials on behavioral threat assessment and 
                management and the prevention of targeted violence 
                within educational entities.
            (5) Mental health service professional assessment.--
        Recommendations relating to the involvement of mental health 
        service professionals to collaborate, advise, and consult in a 
        behavioral threat assessment process, as permitted under 
        applicable Federal and State law.

SEC. 6. DEVELOPMENT OF NATIONAL STRATEGY.

    (a) National Strategy Development.--
            (1) In general.--The Secretary shall develop a national 
        strategy relating to behavioral threat assessment and 
        management and consider the recommendations made by the Task 
        Force pursuant to section 5 in the development of such 
        strategy.
            (2) Requirement.--In developing the national strategy 
        required under paragraph (1), the Secretary shall account for 
        diverse needs and existing resources of different communities.
    (b) Effective Date.--The national strategy required under 
subsection (a) shall take effect 180 days after the date of enactment 
of this Act, unless Congress enacts a joint resolution of disapproval 
of the national strategy during such 180-day period.

SEC. 7. IMPLEMENTATION OF THE NATIONAL STRATEGY.

    (a) In General.--Beginning on the date that the national strategy 
takes effect under section 6(b), the Secretary shall implement the 
national strategy and provide information and training services related 
to the national strategy at the request of any Federal, State, local, 
or Tribal government agency or private entity with protective or public 
safety responsibilities.
    (b) Consultation.--In implementing the national strategy, the 
Secretary may consult with Federal, State, local, and Tribal government 
agencies and private entities.
    (c) Appointment of High-Level Official.--
            (1) In general.--The Secretary shall designate a senior 
        official within the Department of Homeland Security to be 
        responsible for coordinating the implementation of the national 
        strategy.
            (2) Duties.--The duties of the official designated pursuant 
        to paragraph (1) shall include the following:
                    (A) Acting as a liaison between each Federal 
                agency, as well as any State, local, or Tribal 
                government agency or private entity with protective or 
                public safety responsibilities regarding the 
                implementation and coordination of the strategy.
                    (B) Being knowledgeable about budget priorities and 
                familiar with all efforts within the Department of 
                Homeland Security and the Federal Government related to 
                the strategy.
    (d) Contracting Services.--The Secretary shall enter into contracts 
with public agencies or private entities with expertise in behavioral 
threat assessment and management to assist with the implementation of 
the national strategy.
    (e) Website.--The Secretary shall develop and publish an 
interactive public website to publicize information and data on 
evidence-based best practices in behavioral threat assessment and 
management, except that such website may not include law enforcement 
sensitive or classified data or processes and sources.
    (f) Report to Congress.--Not later than 1 year after the date of 
enactment of this Act and each year thereafter, the Secretary shall 
submit to the appropriate committees of Congress a report on any action 
taken to implement the national strategy, which shall include the 
following:
            (1) Information relating to the number of detailees hired 
        (on a full-time equivalent basis).
            (2) Information relating to the number of, and use of, 
        contracts entered into with public agencies or private 
        entities, as required under subsection (d).
            (3) Information relating to the number of entities 
        participating in the Behavioral Threat Assessment and 
        Management Training Program under section 5(3).
            (4) Information relating to the number of educational 
        entities participating in the Behavioral Threat Assessment and 
        Management School Violence Prevention Program under section 
        5(4).
            (5) Information relating to the number of Federal, State, 
        local, and Tribal law enforcement entities participating in the 
        Behavioral Threat Assessment and Management Unit Support 
        Program under section 5(2).
            (6) Information relating to the number of States 
        participating in the Behavioral Threat Assessment and 
        Management Grant Program under section 8.
            (7) A formal evaluation conducted by the Homeland Security 
        Studies and Analysis Institute of the Department of Homeland 
        Security studying the implementation and effectiveness of the 
        national strategy.
            (8) Information relating to the level of cooperation 
        between Federal Government agencies in the implementation of 
        the strategy.
            (9) An assessment of future trends, challenges, and 
        opportunities, including new technologies, that will impact 
        Federal, State, local, and Tribal government agency efforts to 
        combat targeted violence through behavioral threat assessment 
        and management.
            (10) A detailed accounting of the use of the waiver 
        authority described in section 8(d).
    (g) Annual Briefing.--Not later than 1 year after the date of 
enactment of this Act and each year thereafter, the Secretary shall 
brief the appropriate committees of Congress on the progress, changes, 
and other developments with respect to implementing the national 
strategy.

SEC. 8. BEHAVIORAL THREAT ASSESSMENT AND MANAGEMENT GRANT PROGRAM.

    (a) In General.--The Secretary shall award grants to eligible 
entities to establish community-based behavioral threat assessment and 
management units that implement the national strategy.
    (b) Application.--To receive a grant under this subsection, an 
eligible entity shall submit an application to the Secretary at such 
time, in such manner, and containing such information as the Secretary 
may require.
    (c) Matching Funds.--An eligible entity that receives a grant under 
this subsection shall provide a cash contribution in an amount that is 
not less than 10 percent of the amount of the grant.
    (d) Waiver.--The Secretary may waive or reduce the cash 
contribution required under subsection (c) for eligible entities that 
demonstrate a need for such a waiver or reduction.
    (e) Eligible Entity Defined.--In this section, the term ``eligible 
entity'' means--
            (1) a State;
            (2) a Tribal organization;
            (3) an educational entity;
            (4) a unit of local government; or
            (5) a nongovernmental organization.

SEC. 9. AUTHORIZATION OF APPROPRIATIONS.

    (a) In General.--There are authorized to be appropriated to carry 
out sections 7 and 8 $25,000,000 for each of fiscal years 2020 through 
2024.
    (b) Limitation.--No funds authorized to be appropriated under this 
section may be used to--
            (1) train any individual in the use of a firearm; or
            (2) encourage or discourage the otherwise legal ownership 
        and use of firearms.
    (c) No Effect on Other Laws.--Nothing in this Act may be construed 
to preclude or contradict any other provision of law authorizing the 
provision of firearms or training in the use of firearms.
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