MEGAN’S LAW STRENGTHENED

LAWS OF NEW YORK, 2006
CHAPTER 1

EXPLANATION--Matter in italics is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted.

AN ACT to amend the correction law, in relation to requiring level one sex offenders to register for 20 years and level two sex offenders to register for life, eliminating the petition for relief for level three sex offenders, sexual predators, sexually violent offenders and predicate sex offenders

Became a law January 18, 2006, with the approval of the Governor. Passed on message of necessity pursuant to Article III, section 14 of the Constitution by a majority vote, three-fifths being present.

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Legislative intent. The legislature hereby finds and declares that the length of required registration terms under the Sex Offender Registration Act should be increased to enhance public safety and provide better tracking and monitoring of sex offenders.

The legislature hereby finds and declares that Congress is considering legislation that would impose national standards for state sex offender registries. The legislature recognizes that, in the event such federal legislation is enacted, further legislative action in New York may be necessary to conform New York's law to the revised federal standards.

§ 2. Section 168-b of the correction law is amended by adding a new subdivision 10 to read as follows:

10. The division shall promptly notify each sex offender whose term of registration and verification would otherwise have expired prior to March thirty-first, two thousand seven of the continuing duty to register and verify under this article.

§ 3. Subdivisions 1 and 2 of section 168-h of the correction law, subdivision 1 as amended and subdivision 2 as added by chapter 11 of the laws of 2002, are amended to read as follows:

1. The duration of registration and verification for a sex offender who has not been designated a sexual predator, or a sexually violent offender, or a predicate sex offender, [or] and who[, as of March elev-enth, two thousand two, was] is classified as a level one [or level two] risk, or who has not yet received a risk level classification, shall be annually for a period of [ten] twenty years from the initial date of registration.

2. The duration of registration and verification for a sex offender who, on or after March eleventh, two thousand two, is designated a sexual predator, or a sexually violent offender, or a predicate sex offender, or who is[, as of March eleventh, two thousand two,] classified as a level two or level three risk, shall be annually for life. Notwith standing the foregoing, a sex offender who[, as of March eleventh, two thousand two, was] is classified as a level [three] two risk and who is not designated a sexual predator, a sexually violent offender or a predicate sex offender, may be relieved of the duty to register and verify as provided by subdivision one of section one hundred sixty-eight-o of this article.

§ 4. Subdivision 8 of section 168-l of the correction law, as amended by chapter 11 of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows:

8. A failure by a state or local agency or the board to act or by a court to render a determination within the time period specified in this article shall not affect the obligation of the sex offender to register or verify under this article nor shall such failure prevent a court from making a determination regarding the sex offender's level of notification and whether such offender is required by law to be registered for a period of [ten] twenty years or for life. Where a court is unable to make a determination prior to the date scheduled for a sex offender's discharge, parole, release to post-release supervision or release, it shall adjourn the hearing until after the offender is discharged, paroled, released to post-release supervision or released, and shall then expeditiously complete the hearing and issue its determination.

§ 5. Subdivision 1 of section 168-o of the correction law, as amended by chapter 11 of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows:

1. Any sex offender who[, as of March eleventh, two thousand two, was] is classified as a level [three] two risk, and who has not been designated a sexual predator, or a sexually violent offender, or a predicate sex offender, who is required to register or verify pursuant to this article and who has been registered for a minimum period of [thirteen] thirty years may be relieved of any further duty to register upon the granting of a petition for relief by the sentencing court or by the court which made the determination regarding duration of registration and level of notification. The sex offender shall bear the burden of proving by clear and convincing evidence that his or her risk of repeat offense and threat to public safety is such that registration or verification is no longer necessary. Such petition, if granted, shall not relieve the petitioner of the duty to register pursuant to this article upon conviction of any offense requiring registration in the future. Such a petition shall not be considered more than [annually] once every two years. In the event that the sex offender's petition for relief is granted, the district attorney may appeal as of right from the order pursuant to the provisions of articles fifty-five, fifty-six and fifty-seven of the civil practice law and rules. Where counsel has been assigned to represent the sex offender upon the ground that the sex offender is financially unable to retain counsel, that assignment shall be continued throughout the pendency of the appeal, and the person may appeal as a poor person pursuant to article eighteen-B of the county law.

§ 6. This act shall take effect immediately and shall apply to all sex offenders registered or required to register immediately prior to the effective date of this act, or who are required to register on or after such date.

The Legislature of the STATE OF NEW YORK ss:

Pursuant to the authority vested in us by section 70-b of the Public Officers Law, we hereby jointly certify that this slip copy of this session law was printed under our direction and, in accordance with such section, is entitled to be read into evidence.

JOSEPH L. BRUNO Temporary President of the Senate

SHELDON SILVER Speaker of the Assembly