BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 1760
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          CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS
          AB 1760 (Galgiani)
          As Amended August 14, 2008
          Majority vote
           
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          |ASSEMBLY:  |75-0 |(April 14,      |SENATE: |37-0 |(August 20,    |
          |           |     |2008)           |        |     |2008)          |
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           Original Committee Reference:    B. & P.  

           SUMMARY  :  Requires the California Veterinary Medical Board  
          (Board) to offer the veterinary licensing exam at least twice a  
          year and makes other changes related to the licensure and  
          regulation of veterinary professionals.  

           The Senate amendments  :

          1)Delete provisions of the bill referring to "unregistered"  
            persons.

          2)Make specified sections of this bill contingent on the  
            enactment of Senate Bill 1584 (Padilla).

          3)Double-joints these provisions with Senate Bill 1584  
            (Padilla). 
           
          4)Make various technical and clarifying amendments.

           EXISTING LAW  provides for the licensure and regulation of the  
          practice of veterinary medicine by the Board.  Requires the  
          Board to ascertain by means of examination given at least once  
          each year, the professional qualifications of applicants for  
          licensure and to issue a license to every qualified applicant.  
           
          AS PASSED BY THE ASSEMBLY  , this bill was substantially similar  
          to the version passed by the Senate.  
           
          FISCAL EFFECT  :  According to the Senate Committee analysis:

          1)Requires the board to waive examination requirements and issue  
            a temporary license to an applicant who:  a) has either  
            graduated from a veterinary college recognized by the Board or  
            possesses a certificate issued by a specified commission or by  








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            the Program for Assessment of Educational Equivalence; and, b)  
            within three years immediately preceding filing and  
            application, has practiced clinical veterinary medicine for a  
            minimum of two years and completed a minimum of 2,944 hours of  
            clinical practice.  

          2)Beginning 2008-09, the Veterinary Medial Board Contingent Fund  
            (VMBCF) will have a reserve of $781,000, equal to 3.7 months  
            of operation.  By 2011-12, the VMBCF reserve will be negative.  
             (Business and Professions Code 4905 (m) requires that the  
            VMBCF reserve shall not be less than three months nor more  
            than 10 months of annual authorized board expenditures.)  This  
            bill, which will impose new licensing and enforcement workload  
            associated with issuing an estimated 100 new temporary  
            veterinary licenses annually, will exacerbate Board revenue  
            problems.
          3)Under Business and Professions Code 4905 (d), the fee for the  
            Veterinary Medicine Practice Act exam, which is set by  
            regulation in an amount the Board determines reasonably  
            necessary to provide sufficient funding, is capped at $50.   
            The fee, which was set at $35, was increased in October 2007  
            to the cap.  Under subdivision (g) of the same section, the  
            fee for a temporary license is capped at $125.

          4)The increased costs associated with offering more Veterinary  
            Medicine Practice Act exams and processing more temporary  
            licenses will further deplete the VMBCF reserve. Staff  
            recommends the bill be amended to make it contingent on the  
            passage of SB 1584 (Padilla) which would allow an increase in  
            the maximum amounts that the board may set for certain  
            specified fees.  (SB 1584 (Padilla) would also delete the  
            provision of law  requiring the board to set and collect a fee  
            for the national licensing exam, and would require an  
            application fee to be paid by a school or institution seeking  
            approval of registered veterinary technician curriculum.)   
            Absent that contingency, this bill, if chaptered, would  
            exacerbate the board's revenue problems if the fee increases  
            in SB 1584 are not enacted.

          5)TheBoard must adopt regulations in order to increase a fee to  
            a statutory cap.

           COMMENTS  :  According to the author: "It doesn't make sense that  
          we would spend California tax dollars to educate veterinarians  
          in our state universities, only to have them leave California to  








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          practice in another state because it takes too long to get a  
          license in California.  We need to ensure that taxpayer dollars  
          are educating California's future workforce, and that we are  
          able to meet the veterinary needs of our agricultural industry.   
          AB 1760 will ensure that the licensing test is offered at least  
          twice a year, as well as, change the reciprocity standards for  
          veterinarians educated outside of California; helping California  
          meet the high demands of veterinarians in our state." 
           
           This bill is sponsored by the Western United Dairyman and seeks  
          to address the current veterinarian shortage in California,  
          especially in regards to the farming community.  According to  
          the California Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA), there are  
          approximately 7,500 veterinarians in California and 222 graduate  
          from veterinary school each year.  According to a November 2004  
          report by the University of California Subcommittee on  
          Veterinary Medical Education, the current national shortfall of  
          at least 1,500 veterinarians could grow to 15,000 or more over  
          the next 20 years.  The author notes that the current lack of  
          licensed veterinarians has a direct effect on the safety of our  
          food supply, and cites an American Veterinary Medical  
          Association Study stating that the demand for "food supply  
          veterinarians" (farm animal veterinarians) is predicted to  
          increase 12 to 13 percent over the next eight years.  This  
          research also shows that there will most likely be a four to  
          five percent decrease of these types of veterinarians obtaining  
          jobs in our agricultural and farming communities because of the  
          shortage of veterinarians in this state.

           
          Analysis Prepared by  :    Josefina Ramirez / B. & P. / (916)  
          319-3301 


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