Florida Failed on Background Checks for an Entire Year

  • Florida Failed on Background Checks for an Entire Year

Florida Failed on Background Checks for an Entire Year

Florida gubernatorial candidate Adam Putnam oversaw an office that failed to run required background checks on people applying for a concealed weapons permit for over a year because the worker in charge was unable to log in to the system, according to a new report from the Tampa Bay Times.

Today, the Tampa Bay Times published a report titled "Adam Putnam's office stopped concealed weapons background checks for a year because it couldn't log in". She has since been fired and a review of her applications was initiated, resulting in at least 291 revocations.

"I am extremely alarmed at the failure by Commissioner Putnam to disclose that his agency had failed to conduct these critical background checks - allowing possibly mentally disturbed individuals and others who should be disqualified, to be legally armed in Florida", Stewart said.

According to the Tampa Bay Times, applications for concealed weapons permits in Florida at this time-which coincided with the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando that left 49 dead-were at a record high.

Last month, victims of the Parkland tragedy and activists conducted die-ins at Publix grocery stores and called for a boycott of the company after it was reported that the supermarket chain donated more money to Putnam than any candidate in history.

The investigation on the Department of Agriculture shows from February 2016 to March 201, the department failed to adequately do background checks on concealed weapon carry permit applications. The report was issued in June of 2017. But in March 2017 an investigation was triggered after a state employee noted that the state was not getting any correspondence from people whose applications had been rejected due to information gleaned from the national database. Now, he said, there are more "eyeballs" making sure the work is complete and a "more seamless technology transfer" of the NICS background check results.

The investigation found that the Division of Licensing's operations consultant manager, Lisa Wilde, "had a login issue with the NICS checks and never followed up to resolve the issue".

We responded to the email from Putnam's office, asking why the commissioner didn't immediately publicly address the investigation after it was finished past year.

"The former employee was both deceitful and negligent, and we immediately launched an investigation and implemented safeguards to ensure this never happens again", Putnam said in a statement.

He laid the blame exclusively on the employee who forgot the password had signaled the problem to another official but then failed to pursue the matter.

The employee was terminated once her negligence was brought to light.

Putnam asserted that "no one's safety was at risk" because those 291 people would not have been able to purchase a firearm. In Florida, the Department of Agriculture is responsible for carrying out background checks for gun licenses. "I initiated the inspector general and the review of processes and procedures upon learning of this breakdown". Florida Democrats say the "damning and disturbing" report from the Times should disqualify the Republican from being governor.

"I didn't understand why I was put in charge of it".