BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                  AB 1685
                                                                  Page  1

          Date of Hearing:   April 30, 2014

                        ASSEMBLY COMMITTEE ON APPROPRIATIONS
                                  Mike Gatto, Chair

                  AB 1685 (Williams) - As Amended:  April 21, 2014 

          Policy Committee:                              Business,  
          Professions and Consumer Protection           Vote: 14-0

          Urgency:     No                   State Mandated Local Program:  
          No     Reimbursable:              

           SUMMARY  

          This bill increases the statutory maximum for licensure  
          examination fees charged by the Structural Pest Control Board  
          (Board).  Specifically, this bill:  

          1)Authorizes a registered structural pest control company to  
            provide a written notice to the owner or owner's agent, and  
            the tenant of the premises where pest control work is to be  
            done via electronic mail if an email address is provided.

          2)Removes the $15 cap on the applicator's examination fee, and  
            instead authorizes the Board to charge a fee in an amount  
            sufficient to cover the "reasonable regulatory cost" of  
            administering the examination.

          3)Increases the maximum licensure examination fees as follows: 

             a)   Operator examination fees from $25 to $100; 

             b)   Field Representative examination fees from $15 to $75;  
               and, 

             c)   Applicator examination fees from $15 to $60.

          4)Removes the $50 cap on examination fees in cases where the  
            exam is taken during the course of license renewal, and  
            instead authorizes the board to charge an examination fee  
            amount sufficient to cover the reasonable regulatory cost of  
            administering each exam.










                                                                  AB 1685
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           FISCAL EFFECT  

          Minor special fund revenue increase to the Board.

           COMMENTS  

           1)Purpose  .  The proposed fee cap increases are intended to allow  
            the Board to raise the money necessary to modernize testing  
            methodologies from its current written examination to computer  
            based testing (CBT), and more efficiently offer the tests  
            required to become a licensed operator in California. CBT is  
            anticipated to significantly reduce the risks of cheating and  
            simplify test validation, scheduling, and monitoring for Board  
            staff and examinees. The Board has already started a CBT pilot  
            program with two testing sites and is currently absorbing the  
            additional CBT examination cost.

            According to the author's office, "There are currently 17 CBT  
            sites proposed in the state of California and 22 sites in  
            other states. The Board currently only has two examination  
            sites. As such, CBT is an obvious improvement in testing  
            availability and efficacy, particularly for out-of-state  
            candidates who will save on costs associated with airfare and  
            other travel to California to take an examination."

           2)Structural Pest Control Board  . The Board issues, on average,  
            approximately 2,300 licenses each year.  This includes three  
            types of licenses for three different branches of pest  
            control. Each type of license requires the applicant to pass a  
            written examination. According to the Board, the current cost  
            to administer each examination is $37.50 under a Department of  
            Consumer Affairs contract with an outside CBT vendor. The  
            current statutory caps are inadequate to cover existing  
            examination costs.

           3)Proposed Fee Increases  . The Board anticipates increasing the  
            examination fees by roughly $40 per licensure category to  
            cover the actual costs of administering the examination. The  
            proposed examination fee increases by the Board would raise  
            the operator examination fee from $25 to $65; the field  
            representative examination fee from $15 to $50; and the  
            applicator examination fee from $15 to $55.

            If this bill were enacted, the Board anticipates finalizing a  
            cost analysis and then promulgating regulations to support the  








                                                                  AB 1685
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            Board's full costs to administer the new examination program.



           Analysis Prepared by  :    Jennifer Swenson / APPR. / (916)  
          319-2081