As Sean Murphy reports for the Associated Press, some states are opting
out of complying with the federal 2006 Adam Walsh Child Protection and
Safety Act, a law which sought to create a linked, nationwide sex offender
registration system. The law, these noncompliant states claim, is an expensive
proposition, in which the costs outweigh the benefits.
Maryland, apparently, is not one of those states; its
sex offender registry appears to comply with the Adam Walsh law. Many other states, however,
to the tune of 34 of them, have not been able to comply. Five of these
states are proactively refusing to do so.
Some of these states cite valid concerns with the law. One such concern
is the treatment of juvenile offenders, who in some cases would be required
to face lifetime registration.
As Murphy reports, what these states stand to lose in federal grant money.
But not even that is making much of a difference, primarily because of
how much some states, like Texas, estimate it would cost to comply. Texas
thinks that it might cost $38 million to get compliant with the law, whereas
it only stands to gain $1.4 million in federal grant money.