Barry Richard spoke to MA State Rep Shaunna O'Connell about an amendment that would allow child care providers to inquire about Level 1 sex offenders in their area. It was passed as part of the House budget, but eliminated in the Senate version. Now she's looking to have it added back.

The Massachusetts Senate begins debate on it's version of a budget for FY18 minus a very important amendment, submitted by Rep. Shaunna O'Connell (R-Taunton) that was approved as part of the House version of the bill.   The amendment would let child care providers inquire about level 1 sex offenders in their area.

There are an estimated 2,700 level 1 sex offenders in Massachusetts.  Roughly 1,700 or 65 percent, were convicted of sex crimes against kids.  Those crimes include rape, indecent assault and possession of child pornography.

Senate Minority Leader Bruce Tarr is attempting to have Amendment 921 added to the Senate budget.  You can help by contacting your State Senator and urge him to support Amendment 921.

Editor's Note: Barry Richard is the afternoon host on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from Noon-3pm. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.