BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    Ó



                                                                    SB 1331


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          SENATE THIRD READING


          SB  
          1331 (Pavley)


          As Amended  June 29, 2016


          Majority vote


          SENATE VOTE:  39-0


           ------------------------------------------------------------------ 
          |Committee       |Votes|Ayes                  |Noes                |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |----------------+-----+----------------------+--------------------|
          |Business &      |16-0 |Salas, Brough, Baker, |                    |
          |Professions     |     |Bloom, Campos,        |                    |
          |                |     |Chávez, Dahle, Dodd,  |                    |
          |                |     |Eggman, Gatto, Gomez, |                    |
          |                |     |Holden, Jones,        |                    |
          |                |     |Mullin, Ting, Wood    |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |----------------+-----+----------------------+--------------------|
          |Appropriations  |20-0 |Gonzalez, Bigelow,    |                    |
          |                |     |Bloom, Bonilla,       |                    |
          |                |     |Bonta, Calderon,      |                    |
          |                |     |Chang, Daly, Eggman,  |                    |
          |                |     |Gallagher, Eduardo    |                    |
          |                |     |Garcia, Holden,       |                    |
          |                |     |Jones, Obernolte,     |                    |
          |                |     |Quirk, Santiago,      |                    |
          |                |     |Wagner, Weber, Wood,  |                    |








                                                                    SB 1331


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          |                |     |Chau                  |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
          |                |     |                      |                    |
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          SUMMARY:  Allows out-of-state personnel to provide follow-up  
          services in California without a license, under specified  
          conditions; revises the composition of the State Board of the  
          Guide Dogs for the Blind (Board) to include three, instead of  
          two, representatives of the legally blind or visually impaired  
          community and requires one representative each from a designated  
          consumer organization representing Californians who are blind or  
          visually impaired, as specified; and, requires the Board to  
          create a factsheet that provides specified information about the  
          Board which must be made available to each licensed school to  
          provide to every student receiving training from that school.   
          Specifically, this bill:  


          1)Revises the composition of the Board to include at least three  
            members, instead of two, who are blind or visually impaired  
            and who use guide dogs, and further requires that one  
            representative from each of the two major consumer  
            organizations representing Californians who are blind or  
            visually impaired and the Governor must consider the  
            recommendations from those organizations in making those  
            appointments.
          2)States that notwithstanding any other law, whenever an  
            individual has received training or instruction from a school  
            outside of this state that is certified by the International  
            Guide Dog Federation or a successor entity, as determined by  
            the Board, personnel from that school may provide, in this  
            state, any follow-up services to that individual with respect  
            to the specific guide dog for whom training or instruction was  
            originally provided outside of this state. 


          3)Requires personnel from the school to notify the Board on a  








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            specified form within not less than three business days, prior  
            to the time the personnel arrives in this state, of their  
            intent to provide follow-up services, the Board must accept  
            the form in an electronic format, and the name of the  
            individual receiving services is not required to be provided.


          4)States that if follow-up services are to be provided due to  
            emergency circumstances, as determined by the school,  
            notification may be provided within 24 hours after the  
            personnel arrive in this state; and, specifies that emergency  
            services include, but are not limited to, injury to a dog that  
            requires determination as to whether it remains safe for the  
            dog to continue working, an accident involving the dog, or  
            certain sudden changes in behavior that imperil the safety of  
            the handler.  


          5)Prohibits the Board from requiring the disclosure of the  
            individual who will be receiving the follow-up services;  
            however, the Board may require a school to provide the name of  
            the individual to whom services have been provided if needed  
            for the purposes of investigating the personnel from that  
            school who provided the services, so long as the investigation  
            is conducted based on reasonable grounds for determining that  
            personnel may have provided substandard care.


          6)Requires personnel to have fingerprints on file with the Board  
            prior to providing follow-up services, and provides, under  
            emergency circumstances, that personnel have one business day  
            after coming in to the state to meet the fingerprint  
            requirements.


          7)Requires the out-of-state school to provide specified written  
            information to the guide dog handler.










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          8)Permits the Board to refuse to allow personnel to provide  
            follow-up services if the personnel have committed any  
            specified acts.


          9)Subjects the personnel to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the  
            Board including a citation or fine, during the time follow-up  
            services are provided, as specified.


          10)Requires the Board to prepare a fact sheet that contains the  
            following:


             a)   A description of the purposes served by the Board; 
             b)   A description of the Board's role in assisting guide dog  
               users who are victims of alleged guide dog discrimination;  
               and, 


             c)   A description of the Board's arbitration procedures, as  
               specified.


          11)Requires the Board to post the factsheet on its Web site and  
            provide copies to each licensed guide dog school, and requires  
            each school to provide a copy of the factsheet to every  
            student receiving training from that school.
          FISCAL EFFECT:  According to the Assembly Appropriations  
          Committee, this bill will result in minor and absorbable costs  
          to the Board.


          COMMENTS:  


          Purpose.  This bill is sponsored by the California Council of  
          the Blind.  According to the author, "Highly trained guide dogs  
          are vital companions for people who are blind or visually  








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          impaired.  They partner with a guide dog to help them move about  
          safely and independently.  This bill seeks to improve services  
          for those who partner with guide dogs by making a number of  
          reforms to the Board that oversees licensing of the service  
          dogs, which is called the state Board of Guide Dogs for the  
          Blind.  The proposed reforms include a requirement to increase  
          representation in board membership of persons who use guide  
          dogs, as well as provisions to improve outreach and educational  
          efforts to make the public more aware of the board's functions  
          and services.  The bill also allows an out-of-state school to  
          provide limited follow-up services in California, if the school  
          provided the original training to the California resident and  
          dog, is certified by the International Guide Dog Federation and  
          notifies the state Guide Dog Board that they are providing  
          follow-up services in California.  The bill authorizes the Board  
          to refuse any personnel who have committed certain violations of  
          law and gives the board full disciplinary authority to act if a  
          consumer is negatively impacted by an out-of-state school  
          providing such services.  To date, there has never been an  
          adverse incident of follow-up care by an out of state school.   
          California is the only state in the nation that requires  
          mandatory licensing of guide dog schools and instructors.   
          Out-of-state guide dogs schools throughout the nation receive  
          certification by the International Guide Dog Federation."


          Background.  The Board.  The Board was established in January 1,  
          1948 for the specific purpose of providing well-trained guide  
          dogs to blind persons and training blind persons as guide dog  
          consumers.  The Board licenses: 1) guide dog schools; 2) guide  
          dog instructors; and, 3) fundraising programs to open new guide  
          dog schools.  The Board inspects all schools, requires new  
          active guide dog instructors to take a legally defensible  
          written and practical examination, and requires instructors to  
          submit proof of eight hours of continuing education each year to  
          remain licensed. 


          Business and Professions Code Section (BPC) 7200(a) specifies  








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          that the composition of the Board is to include seven members,  
          all of whom are appointed by the Governor.  One appointee must  
          be the Director of Rehabilitation or his designated  
          representative and the remaining members must include persons  
          who have shown an interest in dealing with persons who are blind  
          or visually impaired; two of which must be blind or visually  
          impaired persons who use guide dogs.  The author notes that the  
          Board's current composition does not include an adequate  
          representation of the two consumer advocacy groups whose  
          missions are to help blind individuals gain full independence  
          and equality.  In order to address this issue, this bill will  
          change the composition of the Board to require at least three  
          members, instead of two, who represent the legally blind or  
          visually impaired community.  Two of those appointees must be a  
          representative from each of the two major consumer organizations  
          representing Californians who are legally blind.  


          Out of State Follow-up Services.  California is the only state  
          to license and regulate guide dog instructors and guide dog  
          schools.  As such, there may be instances when a California  
          resident will seek guide dog training services from an  
          unlicensed school outside of California.  There are a limited  
          number of guide dog schools across the country, and while three  
          are licensed in California, there are a few schools outside of  
          the state that have chosen not to obtain California licensure.   
          The issue arises when a California resident who obtained  
          training from one of those out-of-state schools seeks to obtain  
          follow-up instruction from the unlicensed school or instructor  
          who provided the original services outside of California.   
          Current law does not prohibit California-based residents from  
          obtaining services from unlicensed schools or instructors  
          outside of California.  Currently, as noted on the Board's Web  
          site, follow-up services or formal instruction with a client is  
          prohibited in California without a license.  


          During the Board's 2013 sunset review, the 2013 Committee Staff  
          Background Paper raised the issue of unlicensed instructors from  








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          outside of California providing follow-up services in California  
          and noted, "Because California is the only state that regulates  
          guide dog schools, instructors, and fundraisers, some  
          out-of-state guide dog schools and instructors who do not have  
          the ability to get licenses in their home states have expressed  
          concern that they are unable to provide guide dog training  
          services in California without applying for a California  
          license.  The Board has clarified through regulations that  
          "instruction," which can only be conducted by a licensed  
          provider, includes follow-up instruction." 


          This bill seeks to create a pathway for those out-of-state  
          schools and their personnel to provide follow-up services in  
          California to individuals with respect to the specific guide dog  
          for whom the training or instruction was initially provided  
          outside of California.  In order to provide those follow-up  
          services, the unlicensed personnel must abide by the protocols  
          established by this bill.  In order for an unlicensed individual  
          to provide the follow-up services, this bill will require the  
          school to notify the Board no less than three days from the time  
          the personnel arrive in California, and will allow the Board to  
          refuse to allow the follow-up services if the personnel has  
          violated BPC 7211.9 which includes, but is not limited to,  
          making false statements or giving false information for a  
          license or renewal, violating any rule or the Board, committing  
          any acts which are grounds for denial, or being convicted of a  
          felony or any other crime, as specified.  


          This bill will only permit those unlicensed school personnel to  
          provide follow-up services if the school is certified by the  
          International Guide Dog Federation or a successor agency.  This  
          bill also provides a mechanism for follow-up services to be  
          provided on an emergency basis.  This bill does not permit  
          unlicensed guide dog training services to be provided in  
          California in any other situation.  In addition, this bill will  
          require that the unlicensed personnel who are providing the  
          follow-up services submit their fingerprints to the Board and be  








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          subject to the disciplinary jurisdiction of the Board, which may  
          include a citation or fine.  


          Currently, the Board's Web site provides information for  
          consumers including reference material about licensees, consumer  
          notifications, laws, link to a complaint form, Board member  
          information, Board meeting schedule, and press releases, among  
          others.  The author notes that guide dog handlers are often  
          unaware of the Board, and those who do, are unclear about its  
          purpose.  In order to address the concern raised by the author,  
          this bill will also require the Board to create a fact sheet and  
          make it available on its Web site containing information about  
          the purposes of the Board, its role in assisting guide dog users  
          who are victims of alleged guide dog discrimination, and  
          arbitration procedures relating to the resolution of disputes  
          between guide dog users and guide dog schools relating to the  
          continued physical custody and use of a guide dog.  The Board is  
          supposed to provide a copy of this fact sheet to each licensed  
          school, and the schools will be required to provide the fact  
          sheet to each student.  




          Analysis Prepared by:                                             
                          Elissa Silva / B. & P. / (916) 319-3301  FN:  
          0003993



















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