Township of Freehold, NJ
Monmouth County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Township Committee of the Township of Freehold 2-28-2006 by Ord. No. O-06-9. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Board of Parks and Recreation Commissioners — See Ch. 10, Art. II.
Criminal history background investigations — See Ch. 192, Art. II.
Sex offender residency — See Ch. 273.
Sports code of conduct — See Ch. 295.

§ 126-1 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
COSPONSORED PROGRAM
Any program, including but not limited to nonprofit youth-serving organizations as defined below, which receives benefits, either directly or indirectly, including to but not limited to the provision of funding and/or the provision of fields, facilities and/or equipment (and including the maintenance of same), from the Township of Freehold.
CRIMINAL HISTORY RECORD BACKGROUND CHECK
A determination of whether a person has a criminal record by cross-referencing that person's name and fingerprints with those on file with the Federal Bureau of Investigation Identification Division and the State Bureau of Identification in the Division of State Police.
NONPROFIT YOUTH-SERVING ORGANIZATIONS
A corporation, association or other organization established pursuant to Title 15 of the Revised Statutes, Title 15A of the New Jersey Statutes or other law of the state, but excluding public and nonpublic schools, and which provides recreational, cultural, charitable, social or other activities or services for persons younger than 18 years of age, and is exempt from federal income taxes.
REVIEW COMMITTEE
A three-member committee consisting of the Director of Parks and Recreation or designee, Township Administrator or designee and Chief of Police or designee. The Committee shall be charged with the review of all appeals of any Township employee or volunteer whose criminal history background check reveals a disqualifying criminal conviction.
SPONSORED PROGRAM
Recreation programs run directly by the Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation, including oversight, control and/or fiscal contribution.
STATE BUREAU OF IDENTIFICATION
The entity located within the New Jersey State Police responsible for retrieving criminal background information on individuals as requested by state, local or private entities.
TOWNSHIP EMPLOYEES
All full-time, part-time and seasonal employees of the Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation.
VOLUNTEER COACH
Any person involved with coaching or supervising participants in a nonprofit youth-serving organization, whether the title is coach, manager or another title consistent with these terms.
VOLUNTEER REVIEW OPERATION ("VRO")
The unit located within the State Bureau of Identification that is responsible for administering criminal background checks for volunteer coaches as specified in this chapter.

§ 126-2 Requests for volunteer criminal background checks; costs.

A. 
The Township of Freehold requires that all volunteer coaches of nonprofit youth-serving organizations involved in sponsored or cosponsored programs request through the Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation that the State Bureau of Identification and the Federal Bureau of Investigation ("FBI") conduct a criminal history record background on each prospective and current volunteer coach of nonprofit youth-serving organizations in accordance with N.J.A.C. 13:59-1.1 et seq. and with the procedures and guidelines adopted by the VRO. No person will be permitted to act as a volunteer coach until the results of the background checks have been received and reviewed by the Director of Parks and Recreation.
B. 
The Township shall conduct a criminal history record background check only upon receipt of the written consent for a check from the prospective or current volunteer coach.
C. 
Any prospective or current volunteer coach of a nonprofit youth-serving organization who refuses to consent to this procedure shall not be permitted to participate in any sponsored or cosponsored programs involving nonprofit youth-serving organizations.
D. 
The Township shall bear the costs associated with conducting criminal history record background checks for prospective or current volunteer coaches for Township-sponsored programs, and all other nonprofit youth-serving organizations shall bear the costs for conducting checks for prospective or current volunteer coaches participating in cosponsored programs in accordance with the regulations established by the VRO.
E. 
The Director of the Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation may set forth policies and procedures which shall not be inconsistent with this chapter.
F. 
The VRO shall advise the Director of Parks and Recreation of the eligibility of the prospective or current volunteer coach under the law. Any information received by the Director of Parks and Recreation shall be confidential.
G. 
Criminal history background checks will be performed for individuals under the age of 18 in accordance with N.J.A.C. 13:59-1.1 et seq. and with the procedures and guidelines adopted by the VRO.

§ 126-3 Conditions under which a person is disqualified from service.

A. 
A person may be disqualified from serving as a volunteer coach of a nonprofit youth-serving organization if that person's criminal history record background check reveals a disqualifying record in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq.
B. 
In any other state or jurisdiction, conduct which, if committed in New Jersey, would constitute a disqualifying record in accordance with N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq. may also constitute grounds for disqualification.

§ 126-4 Submission and exchange of background information pertaining to volunteer coaches.

A. 
Prospective or current volunteer coaches of nonprofit youth-serving organizations for cosponsored programs shall submit their names, addresses, fingerprints, written consent, and any other necessary information to the organization for the criminal history record background check to be performed. The organization shall submit this documentation to the Director of Parks and Recreation, who shall coordinate the background check and refer the information to the State Bureau of Investigation for the background check. The Director of Parks and Recreation or designee shall be responsible for obtaining the above information for all prospective and current volunteer coaches for all nonprofit youth-serving organizations, both sponsored and cosponsored programs. Thereafter, all information required for subsequent background checks shall be submitted to the Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation, who shall coordinate criminal background checks every 24 to 36 months, not to exceed 36 months after the date of the initial check.
B. 
The Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation shall act as a clearinghouse for the collection and dissemination of information obtained as a result of conducting criminal history record background checks pursuant to this chapter.

§ 126-5 Limitations on access and use of criminal history record information.

A. 
Access to criminal history record information for noncriminal justice purposes, including licensing and employment, is restricted to the members of the Review Committee, as authorized by federal or state statute, rule or regulations, executive order, administrative code, local ordinance or resolution regarding obtaining and disseminating of criminal history record information obtained under this chapter.
B. 
The Review Committee shall limit its use of criminal history record information solely to the authorized person for which it was obtained, and criminal history record information furnished shall not be disseminated to persons or organizations not authorized to receive the records for authorized purposes. Use of this record shall be limited solely to the authorized purpose for which it was given, and it shall not be disseminated to any unauthorized persons. Any person violating federal or state regulations governing access to criminal history record information may be subject to criminal and/or civil penalties.

§ 126-6 Determination by Review Committee; concerning volunteer coaches; appeal process.

A. 
The VRO shall make a recommendation based on the provisions of N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq. as to whether the prospective or current volunteer coach is being recommended. The VRO will provide the Director of Parks and Recreation with a letter of recommendation or nonrecommendation for each individual for whom the VRO completed a background check.
B. 
The Director of Parks and Recreation shall promptly notify a prospective or current volunteer coach who receives a letter of nonrecommendation from the VRO. Individuals who receive a letter of nonrecommendation from the VRO will not be permitted to participate as a volunteer coach. Such individuals may obtain a copy of their criminal history record by contacting the VRO in writing. The individuals shall then have 30 days from the receipt of notification from the Director of Parks and Recreation to petition the Review Committee for a review and to cite reasons substantiating the review.
C. 
Individuals who receive a letter of nonrecommendation from the VRO may be permitted to serve as a volunteer coach if they affirmatively demonstrate rehabilitation to the Review Committee. In determining whether a person has affirmatively demonstrated clear and convincing evidence of rehabilitation, the Review Committee may consider the following factors in conjunction with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq.:
(1) 
The nature and responsibility of the position which the convicted person would hold or has held, as the case may be;
(2) 
The nature and seriousness of the offense;
(3) 
The circumstance under which the offense occurred;
(4) 
The date of the offense;
(5) 
The age of the person when the offense was committed;
(6) 
Whether the offense was an isolated or repeated incident;
(7) 
Any social conditions which may have contributed to the offense; and
(8) 
Any evidence of rehabilitation, including good conduct in prison or the community, counseling or psychiatric treatment received, acquisition of additional academic or vocational schooling, successful participation in correctional work release programs or the recommendation of those who have had the person under their supervision.
D. 
In all instances, the final determination of whether an individual will be permitted to serve as a volunteer coach will lie in the sole discretion of the Review Committee.
E. 
The Review Committee shall promptly advise the prospective or current volunteer coach whether he or she is qualified to serve as a volunteer coach.
F. 
When the Director of Parks and Recreation receives a letter of nonrecommendation from the VRO, the Director of Parks and Recreation may file that letter with the Freehold Township Police Department.
G. 
The Freehold Township Police Department shall keep the written notification on file for three years from the date it was issued.
H. 
The Director of Parks and Recreation may request the Freehold Township Police Department to review its files to determine if there is written notification on file stating whether a criminal history record background check of a current or prospective volunteer coach reveals a disqualifying offense or stating that the person has affirmatively demonstrated rehabilitation under this act.
I. 
No person or entity shall be held liable in any civil or criminal action brought by any party based on any written notification on file with the Freehold Township Police Department pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

§ 126-7 Requests for Township employee criminal background checks, costs.

A. 
The Township of Freehold requires that all prospective and current Township employees, as defined in this chapter, submit to a criminal history record background check in accordance with N.J.A.C. 13:59-1.1 et seq. and with the procedures and guidelines adopted and set forth by the State Bureau of Identification and the Freehold Township Director of Parks and Recreation.
B. 
The Township shall conduct a criminal history record background check only upon receipt of the written consent for check from the prospective or current Township employee.
C. 
Any prospective or current Township employee who refuses to consent to the provisions of this chapter shall not be permitted to be employed by the Township as an employee.
D. 
The Township shall bear all costs associated with conducting criminal history record background checks for prospective or current Township employees.
E. 
The Director of the Freehold Township Department of Parks and Recreation may set forth policies and procedures which shall not be inconsistent with this chapter.
F. 
The Freehold Township Director of Parks and Recreation will be responsible for providing information to prospective or current Township employees covered by this chapter concerning the appropriate authority to contact for the background check. That authority shall then conduct a criminal history background check in accordance with state and federal guidelines.
G. 
The authority conducting the background check shall forward the results of each criminal background check to the Freehold Township Police Department, which shall make a determination as to an individual's eligibility to be employed as a Township employee in accordance with this chapter, pursuant to the parameters outlined in N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq. All information received by the Freehold Township Police Department shall be and remain confidential.
H. 
Criminal history background checks will be performed for individuals under the age of 18 in accordance with N.J.A.C. 13:59-1.1 et seq. and with the procedures and guidelines adopted by the State Bureau of Identification.

§ 126-8 Conditions under which a person is disqualified from employment.

A. 
A person may be disqualified from serving as a Township employee if that person's criminal history record background check reveals a disqualifying record in accordance with the provisions of N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq.
B. 
In any other state or jurisdiction, conduct which, if committed in New Jersey, would constitute a disqualifying record in accordance with N.J.S.A. 15A:3A-1 et seq. may also constitute grounds for disqualification.

§ 126-9 Submission and exchange of background information pertaining to Township employees.

Prospective or current Township employees shall submit their names, addresses, fingerprints, written consent and any other necessary information for the criminal history record background check to the agency designated by the Township to conduct background checks. The Freehold Township Director of Parks and Recreation shall be responsible for coordinating the background checks with prospective or current Township employees. Thereafter, all subsequent background checks shall be coordinated by the Freehold Township Police Department every 24 to 36 months, not to exceed 36 months after the date of the initial check.
A. 
The Freehold Township Police Department shall act as a clearinghouse for the collection and dissemination of information obtained as a result of conducting criminal history record background checks pursuant to this chapter.

§ 126-10 Limitations on access and use of criminal history record information.

A. 
Access to criminal history record information for noncriminal justice purposes, including employment, is restricted to the members of the Review Committee, as authorized by federal or state statute, rule or regulation, executive order, administrative code, local ordinance or resolution regarding obtaining and disseminating of criminal history record information obtained under this chapter.
B. 
The Review Committee shall limit its use of criminal history record information solely to the authorized person for which it was obtained, and criminal history record information furnished shall not be disseminated to persons or organizations not authorized to receive the records for authorized purposes. Use of this record shall be limited solely to the authorized purpose for which it was given, and it shall not be disseminated to any unauthorized persons. Any person violating federal or state regulations governing access to criminal history record information may be subject to criminal and/or civil penalties.

§ 126-11 Determination by Review Committee concerning Township employees; appeal process.

A. 
The authority conducting the background check shall forward the results of its criminal history record background check to the Chief of Police of the Freehold Township Police Department or his designee. The Chief of Police or his designee shall then provide the Freehold Township Director of Parks and Recreation with a determination as to whether to hire or retain a prospective or current Township employee, as appropriate, in accordance with the provisions of this chapter.
B. 
The Director of Parks and Recreation shall promptly notify a prospective or current Township employee who receives a nonhire recommendation from the Chief of Police or his designee. Individuals who receive a nonhire recommendation from the Police Chief or his designee will not be permitted to be employed. Such individuals may obtain a copy of their criminal history record by contacting the State Bureau of Investigation in writing. Such individuals will have 30 days from the receipt of the official notice from the Director of Parks and Recreation to petition the Review Committee for a review and to cite reasons substantiating the review.
C. 
Individuals who receive a nonhire recommendation from the Police Chief or his designee may be permitted to be employed as a Township employee if they affirmatively demonstrate rehabilitation to the Review Committee. In determining whether a person has affirmatively demonstrated clear and convincing evidence of rehabilitation, the Review Committee may consider the following factors:
(1) 
The nature and responsibility of the position which the convicted person would hold or has held, as the case may be;
(2) 
The nature and seriousness of the offense;
(3) 
The circumstance under which the offense occurred;
(4) 
The date of the offense;
(5) 
The age of the person when the offense was committed;
(6) 
Whether the offense was an isolated or repeated incident;
(7) 
Any social conditions which may have contributed to the offense; and
(8) 
Any evidence of rehabilitation, including good conduct in prison or the community, counseling or psychiatric treatment received, acquisition of additional academic or vocational schooling, successful participation in correctional work release programs or the recommendation of those who have had the person under their supervision.
D. 
In all instances, the final determination of whether an individual will be permitted to work as a Township employee will lie in the sole discretion of the Review Committee.
E. 
The Review Committee shall promptly advise the prospective or current Township employee whether he or she is qualified to be employed as such.
F. 
The Freehold Township Police Department shall keep the results of criminal history record background checks on file for three years from the date such results were received by the Department.
G. 
The Director of Parks and Recreation may request the Freehold Township Police Department to review its files to determine if there is written notification on file stating whether a criminal history record background check of a current or prospective Township employee reveals a disqualifying offense or stating that the person has affirmatively demonstrated a rehabilitation under this act.
H. 
No person or entity shall be held liable in any civil or criminal action brought by any party based on any written notification on file with the Freehold Township Police Department to the provisions of this chapter.