BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    



                                                                     AB 317


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          CONCURRENCE IN SENATE AMENDMENTS


          AB  
          317 (Maienschein)


          As Amended  August 26, 2015


          Majority vote


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          |ASSEMBLY:  | 77-0 | (May 18,      |SENATE: |38-0  | (September 1,   |
          |           |      |2015)          |        |      |2015)            |
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          Original Committee Reference:  B. & P.


          SUMMARY:  Exempts a temporary shelter which is operated either  
          by a licensed veterinarian from another state, or a  
          California-licensed veterinarian, that is providing care and  
          shelter to animals during a declared state of emergency, as  
          specified, from having to obtain a premises registration from  
          the Veterinary Medical Board (VMB).  Specifically, this bill:


          1)Exempts a temporary shelter from a premises registration  
            requirement, as specified, if the following conditions are  
            met:
             a)   The temporary shelter is established to provide care and  
               shelter to animals displaced by a state of emergency, as  
               specified, only provides care and shelter to those animals,  
               and, if possible, is located near an American Red Cross  
               shelter, or other equivalent shelter, that houses persons  
               displaced by the state of emergency;
             b)   The temporary shelter is operated by either of the  








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               following:


               i)     A veterinary health care practitioner licensed or  
                 certified by, and in good standing in, another state,  
                 district, or territory of the United States, who is  
                 deployed pursuant to Business and Professions Code (BPC)  
                 Section 900; or, 
               ii)    A veterinary health care practitioner licensed or  
                 certified by, and in good standing in, this state who  
                 responds to a state emergency, as specified;


             c)   The temporary shelter complies with specified sanitation  
               requirements; and, 
             d)   The temporary shelter does not operate beyond a  
               60-calendar-day period per state of emergency.


             e)   The temporary shelter is deployed in a manner that is  
               consistent with the sheltering guidelines established by  
               the California Animal Response Emergency System (CARES).


          2)Requires, within 30 calendar days after a temporary shelter  
            exempt from premises registration requirements ceases  
            operation, the party responsible for the temporary shelter to  
            file a report with the VMB containing the date, place, type,  
            and general description of the care provided at the shelter,  
            and a listing of the veterinary health care practitioners who  
            participated in providing that care.


          3)Permits the VMB to inspect a temporary shelter as specified.  


          The Senate amendments revise the requirements to allow the  
          establishment of a temporary shelter, exempt from premises  
          registration requirements, if specified conditions are met.  


          FISCAL EFFECT:  According to the Senate Appropriations  








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          Committee, pursuant to Senate Rule 28.8, negligible state costs.  
           


          COMMENTS:  


          Purpose.  This bill is sponsored by the American Society for the  
          Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA).  According to the  
          author, "? an overwhelming number of Americans reported on a  
          recent poll that they would not evacuate their homes during a  
          disaster if it means leaving their pets behind.  It is important  
          that we authorize animal welfare responders to establish  
          temporary facilities to ensure the health and safety of  
          Californians as well as their animals. 


          "Mid-disaster is no time to try to grapple with these logistical  
          issues - [this bill] will make California prepared to evacuate  
          every person and every pet when confronted by our next wildfire,  
          flood, mudslide or other major disaster."


          Background.  The author notes that 2015 marks the 10th  
          anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.  The disaster highlighted  
          awareness across the nation about the need to deploy resources  
          to provide services for displaced or lost animals including  
          proper care and shelter during an emergency.  According to the  
          sponsor, in the event of Hurricane Sandy, many individuals had  
          to move to temporary shelters which did not always allow  
          animals.  The ASPCA reports that it established temporary  
          shelters to house those animals along with stray animals.  This  
          bill aims to make it clear that an organization seeking to  
          establish a temporary shelter facility, for the purpose of  
          animal care during a state of emergency, as determined by the  
          appropriate authority, will be exempt from the current premises  
          requirements for veterinary care facilities as long as specific  
          conditions are met.  


          Veterinary Medical Board.  Under current law, BPC Section 4853  
          requires all premises where veterinary medicine is practiced to  








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          obtain a premises permit from the VMB.  There are currently over  
          3000 licensed premises in California and more than 11,000  
          licensed veterinarians.  In order to obtain the premises permit,  
          applicants must submit an application which needs to include the  
          type of practice, the number of employees, the business model,  
          business owner information and a $200 registration fee.  The VMB  
          reports that the application process for a premises permit takes  
          between three and four weeks.  In the case of a declared state  
          of emergency, this process could be viewed as prohibitive for  
          organizations to apply for and receive the appropriate premises  
          license currently required to provide veterinary services.  


          In order to alleviate the potential barrier for organizations to  
          establish temporary shelters, in the event of a declared state  
          of emergency, this bill would exempt organizations from having a  
          premises permit as long as they meet certain requirements  
          including the shelter is operated by a veterinarian who is  
          licensed in another state and has been deployed to California,  
          or by a California-licensed veterinarian; the shelter complies  
          with current sanitary requirements; the shelter does not operate  
          beyond 60 calendar days; requires the party responsible for the  
          temporary shelter to file a report with the VMB, as specified;  
          and, permits the VMB to inspect the temporary shelter at any  
          time.  


          As highlighted on the Web site,  
           http://www.ready.gov/caring-animals  , most shelters for people do  
          not allow animals due to public health reasons; therefore, pet  
          emergency planning is necessary.  As written, in order for a  
          temporary shelter to be established without the proper premises  
          permit, this bill would require a declaration of a state of  
          emergency order as defined in Government Code Section 8858.  


          Emergency Declarations.  The Governor has the authority to issue  
          emergency declarations for state of emergencies and state of war  
          emergencies.  Local emergencies are declared by the local  
          governing body of a city, county or city and county.  Under  
          current law, emergencies may be declared for multiple reasons,  
          including fires, floods, earthquakes, and storms or riots, among  








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          others.  Under the provisions of this bill, an organization  
          would be authorized to establish a temporary shelter and be  
          exempt from the premises requirement for any state of emergency  
          declaration ordered as defined in Government Code Section 8558.   



          Disasters and Animals.  As noted, the Hurricane Katrine disaster  
          of 2005 heightened the awareness and need for effective  
          emergency plans at the local, state and federal level, including  
          emergency plans for pets.  As a result, the Federal Pets  
          Evacuation and Transportation Standards Act of 2006 was passed,  
          which amended the Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency  
          Assistance Act to include that state and local emergency  
          preparedness planning address the needs of individuals with  
          household pets and service animals following a major disaster or  
          emergency.  


          In the event of a declared state of emergency, this bill would  
          authorize temporary shelter facilities to operate in California  
          for a limited period of time without a premises permit as  
          required for all other animal veterinary care services.  


          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Elissa Silva / B. & P. / (916) 319-3301  FN:  
          0001873