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Ala. Senate Blocks Background Check Bill

Montgomery, AL – The Alabama Senate has blocked consideration of a bill that would short-circuit plans by the state's junior college chancellor to have a private company do criminal background checks on college employees.

The Alabama Education Association is pushing a bill that would require the background checks to be done by the state Department of Public Safety, like is done for K-12 employees. Proponents tried to get the bill considered in the Senate on Tuesday, but they fell one vote short of the number of votes needed to begin debate.

The bill has turned into a fight between Chancellor Bradley Byrne and AEA. Opponents said the state Department of Public Safety can't access federal crime records to do a nationwide search on two-year college employees.

The bill is still alive and could come up again in the two meeting days remaining the legislative session.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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