BILL NUMBER: SB 1584	AMENDED
	BILL TEXT

	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  JUNE 23, 2008
	AMENDED IN ASSEMBLY  JUNE 11, 2008

INTRODUCED BY   Senator Padilla

                        FEBRUARY 22, 2008

   An act to amend Sections 4832, 4841.5, 4842.5, 4866, 4867, 4868,
4869, 4870, 4871, 4873, 4875.2, 4875.4, and 4905 of, to add Sections
4842.7, 4875.1, and 4875.3 to, and to add and repeal Section 4809.8
of, the Business and Professions Code, relating to veterinary
medicine, and making an appropriation therefor.



	LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


   SB 1584, as amended, Padilla. Veterinary medicine.
   Existing law, the Veterinary Medicine Practice Act, provides for
the licensure or registration and regulation of veterinarians and
veterinary technicians by the Veterinary Medical Board of California
and makes a violation of that act a crime. Existing law requires the
board to adopt a regular inspection program that provides for random,
unannounced inspections and authorizes the board to inspect at any
time a premises in which veterinary medicine, veterinary dentistry,
or veterinary surgery is being practiced.
   This bill would require the board to appoint a voluntary, advisory
multidisciplinary committee consisting of no more than 9 members to
assist, advise, and make recommendations for the implementation of
rules and regulations necessary to ensure proper administration and
enforcement of the act,  and  would make this provision
inoperative on July 1, 2011, and repealed on January 1, 2012. The
bill would require the board to prioritize its investigative and
prosecutorial resources in a specified manner and to annually report
and make publicly available the number of disciplinary actions that
are taken in each priority category. The bill would require, if the
board determines, as a result of inspection, that a premises or place
is not in compliance with board standards  ,  that 
,  the board provide a notice of deficiencies and a
reasonable time for compliance prior to commencing further action.
   Existing law authorizes the executive officer of the board to,
upon completion of an investigation, issue a citation to a
veterinarian or unlicensed person for violations of the act, as
specified. Existing law requires that, before issuing a citation, the
executive officer submit the alleged violation for review and
investigation to at least one designee of the board who is a
veterinarian licensed in  ,  or employed by  ,  the
state. Existing law provides that a citation may contain a civil
penalty and requires the board to adopt regulations covering the
assessment of civil penalties  which   that
 give due consideration to the appropriateness of the penalty
with respect to various factors, including, but not limited to, the
gravity of the violation.
   This bill would require that consideration of the gravity of the
violation include whether the violation is minor. In addition, the
bill would specifically require that the designee to whom the alleged
violation is submitted prior to issuing a citation be licensed in
 ,  or employed by  ,  the state either full time
or part time and not be out of practice for more than 4 years.
   Existing law requires the board to establish an advisory committee
on issues pertaining to the practice of registered veterinary
technicians and vests that committee with various powers and duties.
   This bill would require that the committee consist of 5 members to
be appointed by the board commencing January 1, 2009, as specified.
The bill would specify the term length and term limit for committee
members and would enact other related provisions.
   Existing law requires that an applicant for registration as a
veterinary technician furnish satisfactory evidence of graduation
from a 2-year curriculum in veterinary technology in a college or
postsecondary institution approved by the board. Alternatively,
existing law authorizes an applicant to furnish satisfactory evidence
of the equivalent of that requirement as determined by the board.
   This bill would specify that education or a combination of
education and clinical practice experience may constitute the
equivalent of that requirement, as determined by the board.
    Existing law authorizes the board to make a charge for official
documents pertaining to the board's affairs. Existing law requires
the board to set and collect various other fees, including, but not
limited to, a national licensing examination fee for veterinarians, a
registration fee for veterinary technicians, a diversion program
registration fee, and an application fee for schools seeking approval
of a registered veterinary technician curriculum. Existing law sets
the maximum amounts of those fees, as specified, and requires deposit
of revenue from those fees into the Veterinary Medical Board
Contingent Fund, a continuously appropriated fund.
   This bill would add a provision to the act requiring a registered
veterinary technician to notify the board of his or her new mailing
address within 30 days of changing that address and to indicate, in
the application for renewal of registration, whether he or she has
changed his or her mailing address. The bill would add a fee of $25
for failing to report that change in mailing address. The bill would
delete the provision authorizing the board to make a charge for
official documents pertaining to the board's affairs and instead
provide that any charge for duplication or other services be set at
the cost of rendering the service, except as specified.  This
  The  bill would also increase the maximum
amounts that the board may set for certain other fees, as specified,
and would delete the provision of existing law requiring the board to
set and collect the fee for the national licensing examination. The
bill would require that a school or institution seeking approval of a
registered veterinary technician curriculum pay an application fee
set by the board not to exceed $300 and also pay the actual costs of
an inspection conducted by the board, as specified. The bill would
make other nonsubstantive, technical changes. By increasing the
source of funds for a continuously appropriated fund, the bill would
make an appropriation.
   Because this bill would create new requirements within the
Veterinary Medicine Practice Act, the violation of which would be a
crime, the bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
   The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local
agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the
state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that
reimbursement.
   This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this
act for a specified reason.
   Vote: majority. Appropriation: yes. Fiscal committee: yes.
State-mandated local program: yes.


THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  SECTION 1.  Section 4809.8 is added to the Business and Professions
Code, to read:
   4809.8.  (a) The board shall appoint a voluntary, advisory
multidisciplinary committee to assist, advise, and make
recommendations for the implementation of rules and regulations
necessary to ensure proper administration and enforcement of this
chapter. Members of the committee shall be appointed from lists of
nominees solicited by the board. The committee shall consist of no
more than nine members.
   (b) The committee shall be subject to the requirements of Article
9 (commencing with Section 11120) of Chapter 1 of Part 1 of Division
3 of Title 2 of the Government Code.
   (c) Committee members shall receive a per diem as provided in
Section 103 and shall be compensated for their actual travel expenses
in accordance with the rules and regulations adopted by the
Department of Personnel Administration.
   (d) This section shall become inoperative on July 1, 2011, and as
of January 1, 2012, is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that
becomes operative on or before January 1, 2012, deletes or extends
the dates on which it becomes inoperative and is repealed. The repeal
of this section renders the committee subject to the review required
by Division 1.2 (commencing with Section 473).
  SEC. 2.  Section 4832 of the Business and Professions Code, as
amended by Section 5 of Chapter 467 of the Statutes of 2004, is
amended to read:
   4832.  (a) The board shall establish an advisory committee on
issues pertaining to the practice of veterinary technicians, that
shall be known as the Registered Veterinary Technician Committee,
hereafter referred to as the committee.
   (b) It is the intent of the Legislature that the Veterinary
Medical Board, in implementing this article, give specific
consideration to the recommendations of the Registered Veterinary
Technician Committee.
   (c) The committee shall consist of five members appointed by the
board commencing January 1, 2009. Three members shall be registered
veterinary technicians, one member shall be either a licensed
veterinarian or an additional registered veterinary technician, and
one member shall be a member of the public. Appointments shall be for
a term of three years, and shall be staggered accordingly.
   (d) No member of the committee shall serve for more than two
 consecutive  terms. The committee shall annually
elect one of its members as chairperson.
   (e) The committee shall comply with Section 101.7.
   (f) The scope of the committee shall not exceed the authority
provided under Section 4833.
  SEC. 3.  Section 4841.5 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4841.5.  To be eligible to take the written and practical
examination for registration as a registered veterinary technician,
the applicant shall:
   (a) Be at least 18 years of age.
   (b) (1) Furnish satisfactory evidence of graduation from, at
minimum, a two-year curriculum in veterinary technology, in a college
or other postsecondary institution approved by the board, or the
equivalent thereof as determined by the board. In the case of a
private postsecondary institution, the institution shall also be
approved by the Bureau for Private Postsecondary and Vocational
Education.
   (2) For purposes of this subdivision, education or a combination
of education and clinical practice experience may constitute the
equivalent of the graduation requirement imposed under this
subdivision, as determined by the board.
  SEC. 4.  Section 4842.5 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4842.5.  The amount of fees prescribed by this article is that
fixed by the following schedule:
   (a) The fee for filing an application for examination shall be set
by the board in an amount it determines is reasonably necessary to
provide sufficient funds to carry out the purposes of this chapter,
not to exceed three hundred fifty dollars ($350).
   (b) The fee for the California registered veterinary technician
examination shall be set by the board in an amount it determines is
reasonably necessary to provide sufficient funds to carry out the
purposes of this chapter, not to exceed three hundred dollars ($300).

   (c) The initial registration fee shall be set by the board at not
more than three hundred fifty dollars ($350), except that, if the
license is issued less than one year before the date on which it will
expire, then the fee shall be set by the board at not more than one
hundred seventy-five dollars ($175). The board may adopt regulations
to provide for the waiver or refund of the initial registration fee
where the registration is issued less than 45 days before the date on
which it will expire.
   (d) The biennial renewal fee shall be set by the board at not more
than three hundred fifty dollars ($350).
   (e) The delinquency fee shall be set by the board at not more than
fifty dollars ($50).
   (f) Any charge made for duplication or other services shall be set
at the cost of rendering the services.
   (g) The fee for filing an application for approval of a school or
institution offering a curriculum for training registered veterinary
technicians pursuant to Section 4843 shall be set by the board at an
amount not to exceed three hundred dollars ($300). The school or
institution shall also pay for the actual costs of an onsite
inspection conducted by the board pursuant to Section 2065.6 of Title
16 of the California Code of Regulations, including, but not limited
to, the travel, food, and lodging expenses incurred by an inspection
team sent by the board.
   (h) The fee for failure to report a change in the mailing address
is twenty-five dollars ($25).
  SEC. 5.  Section 4842.7 is added to the Business and Professions
Code, to read:
   4842.7.  Every person registered by the board under this article
who changes his or her mailing address shall notify the board of his
or her new mailing address within 30 days of the change. The board
shall not renew the registration of any person who fails to comply
with this section unless the person pays the penalty fee prescribed
in Section 4842.5. An applicant for the renewal of a registration
shall specify in his or her application whether he or she has changed
his or her mailing address and the board may accept that statement
as evidence of the fact.
  SEC. 6.  Section 4866 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4866.  (a) The board shall establish criteria for the acceptance,
denial, or termination of veterinarians and registered veterinary
technicians in a diversion program. Only those veterinarians and
registered veterinary technicians who have voluntarily requested
diversion treatment and supervision by a diversion evaluation
committee shall participate in a program.
   (b) The board shall establish criteria for the selection of
administrative physicians who shall examine veterinarians and
registered veterinary technicians requesting diversion under a
program. Any reports made under this article by the administrative
physician shall constitute an exception to Sections 994 and 995 of
the Evidence Code.
   (c) The diversion program may accept no more than 100 participants
who are licensees of the board.
  SEC. 7.  Section 4867 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4867.  The diversion evaluation committee shall inform each
veterinarian and registered veterinary technician who requests
participation in a program of the procedures followed in the program,
of the rights and responsibilities of the veterinarian and
registered veterinary technician in the program, and of the possible
results of noncompliance with the program.
  SEC. 8.  Section 4868 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4868.  Each diversion evaluation committee shall have the
following duties and responsibilities:
   (a) To evaluate those veterinarians and registered veterinary
technicians who request participation in the program according to the
guidelines prescribed by the board and to consider the
recommendation of the administrative physician on the admission of
the veterinarian or registered veterinary technician to the diversion
program.
   (b) To review and designate those treatment facilities to which
veterinarians and registered veterinary technicians in a diversion
program may be referred.
   (c) To receive and review information concerning veterinarians and
registered veterinary technicians participating in the program.
   (d) To call meetings as necessary to consider the requests of
veterinarians and registered veterinary technicians to participate in
a diversion program, and to consider reports regarding veterinarians
and registered veterinary technicians participating in a program
from an administrative physician, or from others.
   (e) To consider in the case of each veterinarian and registered
veterinary technician participating in a program whether he or she
may with safety continue or resume the practice of veterinary
medicine or the assisting in the practice of veterinary medicine.
   (f) To set forth in writing for each veterinarian and registered
veterinary technician participating in a program a treatment program
established for each such veterinarian and registered veterinary
technician with the requirements for supervision and surveillance.
   (g) To hold a general meeting at least twice a year, which shall
be open and public, to evaluate the program's progress, to review
data as required in reports to the board, to prepare reports to be
submitted to the board, and to suggest proposals for changes in the
diversion program.
  SEC. 9.  Section 4869 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4869.  Notwithstanding the provisions of Article 9 (commencing
with Section 11120) of Chapter 1 of Part 1 of Division 3 of Title 2
of the Government Code, relating to public meetings, a diversion
evaluation committee may convene in closed session to consider
reports pertaining to any veterinarian or registered veterinary
technician requesting or participating in a diversion program. A
diversion evaluation committee shall only convene in closed session
to the extent that it is necessary to protect the privacy of a
veterinarian or registered veterinary technician.
  SEC. 10.  Section 4870 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4870.  Each veterinarian and registered veterinary technician who
requests participation in a diversion program shall agree to
cooperate with the treatment program designed by a diversion
evaluation committee. Any failure to comply with the provisions of a
treatment program may result in termination of the veterinarian's or
registered veterinary technician's participation in a program.
  SEC. 11.  Section 4871 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4871.  (a) After a diversion evaluation committee in its
discretion has determined that a veterinarian or registered
veterinary technician has been rehabilitated and the diversion
program is completed, the diversion evaluation committee shall purge
and destroy all records pertaining to the veterinarian's or
registered veterinary technician's participation in a diversion
program.
   (b) All board and diversion evaluation committee records and
records of proceedings pertaining to the treatment of a veterinarian
or registered veterinary technician in a program shall be kept
confidential and are not subject to discovery or subpoena.
  SEC. 12.  Section 4875.1 is added to the Business and Professions
Code, to read:
   4875.1.  (a) In order to ensure that its resources are maximized
for the protection of the public, the board shall prioritize its
investigative and prosecutorial resources to ensure that
veterinarians and registered veterinary technicians representing the
greatest threat of harm are identified and disciplined expeditiously.
Cases involving any of the following allegations shall be handled on
a priority basis, as follows, with the highest priority being given
to cases in paragraph (1):
   (1) Negligence or incompetence that involves death or serious
bodily injury to an animal patient, such that the veterinarian or
registered veterinary technician represents a danger to the public.
   (2) Cruelty to animals.
   (3) A conviction or convictions for a criminal charge or charges
or being subject to a felony criminal proceeding without
consideration of the outcome of the proceeding.
   (4) Drug or alcohol abuse by a veterinarian or registered
veterinary technician involving death or serious bodily injury to an
animal patient.
   (5) Repeated acts of excessive prescribing, furnishing, or
administering of controlled substances  , or repeated acts of
prescribing, dispensing, or furnishing of controlled substances.
  . 
   (6) Practicing veterinary medicine while under the influence of
drugs or alcohol.
   (b) The board may prioritize cases involving an allegation of
conduct that is not described in subdivision (a). Those cases
prioritized shall not be assigned a priority equal to or higher than
the priorities established in subdivision (a).
   (c) The board shall annually report and make publicly available
the number of disciplinary actions that are taken in each priority
category specified in subdivisions (a) and (b).
  SEC. 13.  Section 4873 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4873.  The board shall charge each veterinarian and registered
veterinary technician who is accepted to participate in the diversion
program a diversion program registration fee. The diversion program
registration fee shall be set by the board in an amount not to exceed
four thousand dollars ($4,000). In the event that the diversion
program registration exceeds five hundred dollars ($500), the board
may provide for quarterly payments.
  SEC. 14.  Section 4875.2 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4875.2.  If, upon completion of an investigation, the executive
officer has probable cause to believe that a veterinarian or an
unlicensed person acting as a veterinarian has violated provisions of
this chapter, he or she may issue a citation to the veterinarian or
unlicensed person, as provided in this section. Each citation shall
be in writing and shall describe with particularity the nature of the
violation, including a reference to the provision of this chapter
alleged to have been violated. In addition, each citation may contain
an order of abatement fixing a reasonable time for abatement of the
violation, and may contain an assessment of a civil penalty. The
citation shall be served upon the veterinarian or unlicensed
individual personally or by any type of mailing requiring a return
receipt. Before any citation may be issued, the executive officer
shall submit the alleged violation for review and investigation to at
least one designee of the board who is a veterinarian licensed in or
employed by the state either full time or part time and who has not
been out of practice for more than four years. The review shall
include attempts to contact the veterinarian or unlicensed person to
discuss and resolve the alleged violation. Upon conclusion of the
board  designee's  review, the designee shall prepare a
finding of fact and a recommendation. If the board designee concludes
that probable cause exists that the veterinarian or unlicensed
person has violated any provisions of this chapter, a civil citation
shall be issued to the veterinarian or unlicensed person.
  SEC. 15.  Section 4875.3 is added to the Business and Professions
Code, to read:
   4875.3.  If the board determines, as a result of its inspection of
the premises pursuant to Section 4809.5, or any other place where
veterinary medicine, veterinary dentistry, veterinary surgery, or the
various branches thereof is practiced, or that is otherwise in the
possession of a veterinarian for purpose of that practice, that it is
not in compliance with the standards established by the board, the
board shall provide a notice of any deficiencies and provide a
reasonable time for compliance with those standards prior to
commencing any further action pursuant to this article.
  SEC. 16.  Section 4875.4 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4875.4.  (a) The board shall, in the manner prescribed in Section
4808, adopt regulations covering the assessment of civil penalties
under this article which give due consideration to the
appropriateness of the penalty with respect to the following factors:

   (1) The gravity of the violation, including, but not limited to,
whether the violation is minor.
   (2) The good faith of the person being charged.
   (3) The history of previous violations.
   (b) In no event shall the civil penalty for each citation issued
be assessed in an amount greater than five thousand dollars ($5,000).

   (c) Regulations adopted by the board shall be pursuant to the
procedures for citations and fines in accordance with Section 125.9.
  SEC. 17.  Section 4905 of the Business and Professions Code is
amended to read:
   4905.  The following fees shall be collected by the board and
shall be credited to the Veterinary Medical Board Contingent Fund:
   (a) The fee for filing an application for examination shall be set
by the board in an amount it determines is reasonably necessary to
provide sufficient funds to carry out the purpose of this chapter,
not to exceed three hundred fifty dollars ($350).
   (b) The fee for the California state board examination shall be
set by the board in an amount it determines is reasonably necessary
to provide sufficient funds to carry out the purpose of this chapter,
not to exceed three hundred fifty dollars ($350).
   (c) The fee for the Veterinary Medicine Practice Act examination
shall be set by the board in an amount it determines reasonably
necessary to provide sufficient funds to carry out the purpose of
this chapter, not to exceed one hundred dollars ($100).
   (d) The initial license fee shall be set by the board not to
exceed five hundred dollars ($500) except that, if the license is
issued less than one year before the date on which it will expire,
then the fee shall be set by the board at not to exceed two hundred
fifty dollars ($250). The board may, by appropriate regulation,
provide for the waiver or refund of the initial license fee where the
license is issued less than 45 days before the date on which it will
expire.
   (e) The renewal fee shall be set by the board for each biennial
renewal period in an amount it determines is reasonably necessary to
provide sufficient funds to carry out the purpose of this chapter,
not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500).
   (f) The temporary license fee shall be set by the board in an
amount it determines is reasonably necessary to provide sufficient
funds to carry out the purpose of this chapter, not to exceed two
hundred fifty dollars ($250).
   (g) The delinquency fee shall be set by the board, not to exceed
fifty dollars ($50).
   (h) The fee for issuance of a duplicate license is twenty-five
dollars ($25).
   (i) Any charge made for duplication or other services shall be set
at the cost of rendering the service, except as specified in
subdivision (h).
   (j) The fee for failure to report a change in the mailing address
is twenty-five dollars ($25).
   (k) The initial and annual renewal fees for registration of
veterinary premises shall be set by the board in an amount not to
exceed four hundred dollars ($400) annually.
   (l) If the money transferred from the Veterinary Medical Board
Contingent Fund to the General Fund pursuant to the Budget Act of
1991 is redeposited into the Veterinary Medical Board Contingent
Fund, the fees assessed by the board shall be reduced
correspondingly. However, the reduction shall not be so great as to
cause the Veterinary Medical Board Contingent Fund to have a reserve
of less than three months of annual authorized board expenditures.
The fees set by the board shall not result in a Veterinary Medical
Board Contingent Fund reserve of more than 10 months of annual
authorized board expenditures.
  SEC. 18.  No reimbursement is required by this act pursuant to
Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution because
the only costs that may be incurred by a local agency or school
district will be incurred because this act creates a new crime or
infraction, eliminates a crime or infraction, or changes the penalty
for a crime or infraction, within the meaning of Section 17556 of the
Government Code, or changes the definition of a crime within the
meaning of Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California
Constitution.