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Officials call for mandatory fingerprinting

Oct 15, 2018 7:00 am
Amanda Purcell is reporting for Columbia-Greene Media on the effort spearheaded by Hudson 5th Ward Alderman Dominic Merante to impose and enforce the process of mandatory fingerprinting for all city Youth Department employees. “There has been a lot of conversation about youth programs at the department of youth which is great,” Merante said. “I support quality youth programs for the city, but I’m concerned that there has been no outrage regarding protecting our youth. The local law in 2010 was adopted for a reason. It concerns me that no fingerprints have been collected, from my understanding, in over eight years." Merante was referring a local law, adopted in 2010, which mandated the department conduct fingerprint background checks for job applicants over the age of 18. Mayor Rick Rector said a new screening procedure will provide regular background checks and updated reports for staff. Only new hires will be fingerprinted, Youth Department Director Nick Zachos said, adding that current employees were not told they would be fingerprinted, so they legally cannot be. The Youth Department has 16 part-time and two full-time employees, city Treasurer Heather Campbell said. Approximately $4,000 was allocated for fingerprinting through a budget amendment this summer. The Youth Department could absorb future costs, Zachos said, in the amount of $90 per new employee. Read the full story at HudsonValley360 [dot] com.