BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



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          Date of Hearing:   June 29, 2010

              ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON BUSINESS, PROFESSIONS AND CONSUMER  
                                     PROTECTION
                                 Mary Hayashi, Chair
            SB 1491 (Business, Professions and Economic Development) - As  
                               Amended:  June 16, 2010

           SENATE VOTE  :   30-0
           
          SUBJECT  :   Professions and vocations.

           SUMMARY  :  Amends various provisions pertaining to the regulatory  
          boards under the Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) and  
          professions regulated in the Business and Professions Code  
          (BPC).  Specifically,  this bill  :   

          1)Makes the following changes to the California Board of  
            Accountancy (CBA):

        a)   Renames the "administrative" committee under CBA the  
               "enforcement advisory" committee and makes conforming  
               changes;

        b)   Clarifies that CBA may appoint board members and non-board  
               members to its advisory committees;

        c)   Clarifies that a peer review report shall be issued by an  
               individual permitted to practice public accountancy and is  
               unaffiliated with the firm being reviewed, as specified;

        d)   Deletes obsolete provisions; and,

        e)   Makes technical, clarifying changes.

          2)Makes the following changes to the Board for Professional  
            Engineers and Land Surveyors:

        a)   Allows applicants for certification as an  
               engineer-in-training to qualify using engineering  
               education, engineering experience, or a combination of  
               engineering education and experience totaling three years;

        b)   Prohibits licensure examination fees administered by a public  
               or private organization from being greater than the actual  








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               cost of the development and administration of the  
               examination and permits the fee to be paid directly to the  
               organization; and,

        c)   Clarifies that application, examination, and licensure fees  
               are separate fees and makes conforming changes.

          3)Makes the following changes to the Contractors State License  
            Board (CSLB):

        a)   Clarifies that civil penalties assessed by CSLB for  
               unlicensed contracting or aiding and abetting unlicensed  
               activity are not subject to certain provisions of law  
               limiting fines by agencies under DCA;

        b)   Extends the time for CSLB to pursue a complaint against an  
               unlicensed contractor to 18 months after the complaint is  
               filed, conforming to the same timeframe for action against  
               a licensee;

        c)   Authorizes CSLB to administer its asbestos open book  
               examination electronically;

        d)   Adds violation of the Subletting and Subcontracting Fair  
               Practices Act (Act) as cause for disciplinary action by  
               CSLB;

        e)   Removes a reference to an obsolete notice requirement; and,

        f)   Makes technical changes.

          4)Permits guide dog schools and instructors licensed by the  
            Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind (BGDB) to provide in-home  
            training, without BGDB's authorization.

          5)Makes the following changes to the Board of Barbering and  
            Cosmetology (BBC):

        a)   Clarifies the definition of nail care to refer to massaging,  
               cleansing, or beautifying from the elbow to the fingertips  
               or the knee to the toes;

        b)   Specifies that unlicensed activity violations may also be  
               subject to an administrative fine in addition to a  
               misdemeanor;








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        c)   Allows the use of metal instruments for the smoothing and  
               massaging of the hands and feet, as specified;

        d)   Clarifies that a licensed establishment may provide towels or  
               air hand dryers instead of approved sanitary towels in the  
               establishment's hand washing facilities; and,

        e)   Clarifies that persons appealing a citation may either appear  
               in person or file a written appeal to the disciplinary  
               review committee.

          6)Clarifies that identification cards issued by county clerks to  
            employees of professional corporations or partnerships contain  
            a photograph of the employee in the lower left corner.

          7)Makes the following changes to provisions relating to human  
            remains:

        a)   Provides that cremated remains may be placed into "keepsake  
               urns" and kept as authorized by those with the right to  
               control their disposition, requires a disposition permit to  
               be obtained for each keepsake urn, and makes conforming and  
               clarifying changes; and,

        b)   Repeals obsolete provisions of law requiring a crematory to  
               have associated with it a cemetery, columbarium, burial  
               park, or mausoleum, as specified.

          8)Makes technical changes to the non-collusion affidavit  
            required in public works contract bids.

           EXISTING LAW  :

         1)Provides for the licensing and regulation of various  
            professions and businesses by some 
         23 boards, four committees, seven bureaus, and one commission  
            within DCA under various BPC licensing acts.

         2)Contains the following provisions relating to the CBA:

             a)   Authorizes CBA to establish an administrative committee  
               to provide advice and assistance relative to investigations  
               of licensee misconduct;









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             b)   Authorizes the creation of other advisory committees  
               consisting of public accountants or certified public  
               accountants (CPAs) who need not be members of the CBA;

             c)   Requires California-licensed accounting firms to undergo  
               a peer review of their accounting and auditing services  
               every three years, and identifies who must conduct peer  
               reviews and issue peer review reports;

             d)   Deletes the 120-hour education pathway for licensure and  
               requires an applicant for a CPA license to meet a 150-hour  
               education requirement effective January 1, 2014; and,

             e)   Makes various provisions relating to accountancy.

         3)Contains the following provisions relating to the CSLB: 

             a)   Requires a citation to an unlicensed contractor be  
               issued within four years of the act that is the basis for  
               the citation;

             b)   Establishes civil penalties for unlicensed contracting  
               or aiding and abetting unlicensed activity;

             c)   Requires CSLB to administer an asbestos open book  
               examination; and,

             d)   Authorizes the CSLB to discipline contractors for  
               violations of the Act.

         4)Authorizes the BGDB to approve guide dog schools to provide  
            home guide dog training, if the school applies and submits a  
            written plan for conducting home training.

         5)Contains the following provisions relating to the BBC:

             a)   Establishes various specialties within the practice of  
               cosmetology, and specifies that nail care is specified care  
               for the nails of any person;

             b)   Provides that unlicensed barbering, cosmetology, or  
               electrolysis is a misdemeanor violation;

             c)   Prohibits a licensee providing a manicure or pedicure  
               from using metal instruments except those instruments  








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               necessary for the cutting, trimming, manicuring, or  
               pedicuring of nails or cuticles;

             d)   Requires a licensed establishment to provide handwashing  
               facilities, including running water, soap, and approved  
               sanitary towels; and,

             e)   Provides that BBC licensees issued a notice of violation  
               or a citation may appeal to a disciplinary review  
               committee, and provides that the licensee shall appear in  
               person and may file a written appeal.

         6)Contains the following provisions relating to human remains:

             a)   Specifies that cremated remains may be removed in a  
               durable container from the place of cremation or interment  
               and kept in the dwelling owned or occupied by the person  
               having the right to control disposition of the remains, or  
               other specified places, under the authority of a  
               disposition permit issued by the local registrar of vital  
               records; and, 

             b)   Requires a crematory to have associated with it a  
               cemetery, columbarium, burial park, or mausoleum.

           FISCAL EFFECT  :   Unknown

           COMMENTS  :   According to the author's office, "[This] bill  
          consolidates a number of non-controversial provisions related to  
          various regulatory programs and professions governed by the  
          [BPC].  Consolidating the provisions in one bill is designed to  
          relieve the various licensing boards, agencies and professions  
          from the necessity and burden of having separate measures for a  
          number of non-controversial revisions.  Many are minor,  
          technical and updating changes, while other provisions are  
          substantive changes intended to improve the ability of various  
          licensing programs and other entities to efficiently and  
          effectively administer their respective laws."

           Background  .  The background information was provided by the  
          author's office relating to the more significant and substantive  
          provisions in this measure:

           CBA  .  According to CBA, the term, "administrative committee,"  
          does not clearly communicate to licensees or to consumers the  








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          actual role that this committee fulfills as an enforcement  
          advisory committee to the CBA; therefore, the CBA has  
          recommended renaming the committee as the enforcement advisory  
          committee.  The CBA states that current practice is to allow  
          public board members to be appointed to the CBA's legislative  
          committee, the committee on professional conduct and other  
          committees of the CBA.  However, it is unclear whether this  
          practice is consistent with [current law] which states that CPAs  
          may be appointed to committees; therefore, this measure would  
          clarify [CBA's] practice of appointing non-CPA board members  
          (i.e. public members) to committees.  The law provides that a  
          licensee must conduct a peer review, however it is not clear  
          that a licensee must issue the actual peer review report; this  
          bill would clarify those provisions.

           CSLB  .  According to the CSLB, the requirement for an unlicensed  
          person to give a notice to consumers was repealed by SB 1914  
          (Business, Professions and Economic Development Committee)  
          Chapter 865, Statutes of 2004; the bill makes a conforming  
          change by removing reference to that notice.  Complaints  
          received against unlicensed contractors just prior to the  
          expiration of the statute of limitations (four years from the  
          act or omission) cannot be pursued due to the lack of sufficient  
          time to conduct an investigation, according to CSLB, while the  
          timeframe for action against a licensee is 18 months after the  
          complaint is filed; the bill conforms the timeframe for taking  
          action against an unlicensed contractor to the time for taking  
          action against a licensee.  CSLB further states that [current  
          law] places a $5,000 cap for fines assessed by agencies under  
          the DCA, while the contractor's law provides for additional  
          civil penalties assessed by the CSLB for unlicensed contracting  
          or aiding and abetting unlicensed activity.  This bill clarifies  
          that that these civil penalties are not subject to those general  
          provisions of law which restrict fine amounts.  CSLB indicates  
          that currently the asbestos open book examination is  
          administered by paper and pencil, a more expensive and slow  
          examination method.  This bill would require the CSLB to offer  
          the exam and study booklet online on its Internet website.  The  
          CSLB also indicates that the Act authorizes the CSLB to  
          discipline contractors for violations of the Act; however  
          [current law] does not include a specific reference to  
          violations of the PCC.  This bill would make reference to that  
          Act.

           BGDB  .  According to the BGDB, current law is unclear,  








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          restrictive and problematic on the provision of in-home training  
          to potential guide dog users; this bill clarifies these  
          provisions and provides that guide dog schools and guide dog  
          instructors licensed by [BGDB] may provide in-home training,  
          regardless of the user's experience with a guide dog.

           BBC  .  According to the BBC, the law is unclear whether the  
          practice of nail care includes massaging, cleansing, or  
          beautifying from the elbow to the finger tips or the knee to the  
          toes.  [This bill] clarifies these provisions.  BBC states, that  
          although the law provides that unlicensed barbering,  
          cosmetology, or electrolysis is a misdemeanor violation, it is  
          unclear whether it may be subject to an administrative citation  
          and fine.  This bill would clarifiy that unlicensed practice may  
          also be subject to an administrative fine.  BBC also indicates  
          that the law prohibits a licensee providing a manicure or  
          pedicure from using metal instruments, except those instruments  
          necessary for the cutting, trimming, manicuring or pedicuring of  
          nails or cuticles.  However it does not include the use of metal  
          instruments to smooth or massage the hands or feet.  The  
          amendments would clarify that metal instruments may be used for  
          the smoothing and massaging the hands or feet.  

          BBC further indicates that provisions requiring an establishment  
          to have "approved sanitary towels" has been a source of  
          confusion for licensees and board staff alike.  While the  
          statute attempts to be specific, it only serves to make the  
          towel requirements more vague, according to BBC, and this bill  
          clarifies those provisions.  BBC states that in order to process  
          appeals as expeditiously and conveniently as possible for  
          licensees, the BBC's disciplinary review committee has recently  
          allowed citations to be appealed in writing without the licensee  
          physically appearing.  However, the statutory language could be  
          interpreted to require the physical appearance of the appellant,  
          which is expensive for the licensee, and time consuming for the  
          disciplinary review committee.  Giving individuals the option to  
          submit a written appeal would mitigate these issues, according  
          to BBC.

           Human Remains  .  According to DCA, current law requires a  
          crematory to be associated with a cemetery, columbarium, burial  
          park, or mausoleum.  However, this provision is confusing  
          because it seems to suggest that a crematory must be located  
          within a cemetery.  Many licensed crematories do not operate  
          within a cemetery and the provision is outdated.  [This bill]  








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          will repeal this provision.

          According to the California Funeral Directors Association, the  
          Health and Safety Code makes specified provisions regarding  
          cremated remains including providing that cremated remains may  
          be removed in a durable container from the place of cremation or  
          interment and kept in the dwelling owned or occupied by the  
          person having the right to control disposition of the remains,  
          or other specified places, under the authority of a disposition  
          permit issued by the local registrar of vital records.  These  
          provisions do not allow for family members or other loved ones  
          to use keepsake urns to hold small portions of the cremated  
          remains.  This bill would permit the use of keepsake urns, as  
          specified.

           REGISTERED SUPPORT / OPPOSITION  :

           Support 
           
          Board for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors
          California Board for Accountancy
          California Council of the Blind
          Contractors State License Board
          State Board of Guide Dogs for the Blind
           
            Opposition 
           
          None on file.

           Analysis Prepared by  :    Rebecca May / B.,P. & C.P. / (916)  
          319-3301