SENATE BILL NO. 329
AN ACT TO AMEND TITLE 5 AND TITLE 24 OF THE DELAWARE CODE RELATING TO THE REGULATION OF BUSINESSES AND OCCUPATIONS WHICH PERFORM CERTAIN SERVICES; AND PROVIDING FOR A STATE BOARD OF SERVICES.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE:
Section 1. Amend Subchapter II, Chapter 31, Title 24 of the Delaware Code by re-designating said Subchapter as new Chapter 3, Part I, Title 5 of the Delaware Code; and by re-numbering all affected sections accordingly.
Section 2. Amend §3102, Chapter 31, Title 24 of the Delaware Code by striking said section in its entirety.
Section 3. Amend Title 24 of the Delaware Code by adding thereto a new chapter, designated as Chapter 50, which new chapter shall read as follows:
"CHAPTER 50. BOARD OF SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER I. GENERAL PROVISIONS
§5001. Objectives and Functions
The primary objective of the Board of Services, to which all other objectives and purposes are secondary, is to protect the general public (especially those persons who are direct recipients of services regulated by this Chapter) from unsafe practices, and from occupational practices which tend to reduce competition or to fix the price of services rendered. The secondary objectives of the Board are to maintain minimum standards of practitioner competency, and to maintain certain standards in the delivery of services to the public. In meeting its objectives, the Board shall develop standards assuring professional competence; shall monitor complaints brought against regulated practitioners of occupational groups under the jurisdiction of the Board; shall adjudicate at formal complaint hearings; shall develop rules and regulations, and shall impose sanctions where necessary against persons in the occupational groups regulated by the Board.
§5002. Board of Services.
The Board of Services shall he equally divided between all occupational groups under the Board's jurisdiction. Board members shall include public members, and the number of public members shall he not less than one-fourth of the total Board membership. The Board shall annually elect a chairman from among its membership.
No member shall, while serving on the Board, he an elected or appointed official of any professional association which in any way represents an occupational group regulated by this Chapter. During the period a member serves on the Board his primary business or occupational office shall be located within this State; and such member shall be fully qualified to practice the occupation which he represents.
(c) Appointment; Term of Office.
All members of the Board shall be appointed by the Governor. All Board vacancies shall be filled by the Governor for the remainder of the term vacated, and successors shall have the same qualifications as are required for original appointment. No member shall serve two consecutive full terms; provided however, that a member may succeed himself for a full term If such full term immediately follows a partial term where the member had been appointed to fill a vacancy. All terms shall be for a period of five years; and the terms of Board members shall be staggered in such manner as will ensure, as nearly as possible, an equal and uniform number of vacancies arising each year. The term of an appointed member shall expire on the date specified in the appointment, and the member shall no longer be eligible to participate In Board proceedings unless lawfully re-appointed. The chairman shall serve in that office for one year, and shall not succeed himself.
(d) Suspension and Removal.
A member of the Board shall he suspended or removed by the Governor for misfeasance, nonfeasance or malfeasance. A member subject to disciplinary proceedings shall be disqualified from Board business until the charge is adjudicated or otherwise concluded. A Board member may appeal any suspension or removal to the Superior Court.
Board members shall he reimbursed for all expenses Involved in each meeting, including travel; and in addition shall receive not more than $40.00 each month, as compensation for all meetings attended in that month.
(f) Meetings and Quorum.
The Board shall meet at least once in each month of a calendar year and at such other times ns the chairman deems necessary, or at the request of a majority of the Board members. Advance notice of any special meeting shall be given to all members. A majority of members shall constitute a quorum. Any member who fails to attend three consecutive meetings, or who fails to attend at least half of all regular meetings during any calendar year, shall automatically upon such occurrence be deemed to have resigned from office.
Minutes of all uneetings shall be recorded and copies of the record shall he maintained by the Division of Business and Occupational Regulation. All matters relating to a hearing held pursuant to statute shall be recorded and transcribed by the Division.
(h) Conflict of Interest.
The provisions set forth for "employees' in §5855, Chapter 58, Title 29 of the Delaware Code shall apply to all members of the Board, and to all agents and other persons appointed by or otherwise employed by the Board.
§5003. Powers and Duties.
Pile Board of Services shall regulate funeral service practitioners, and such other businesses and occupations as may be placed under the Board's jurisdiction. The Board shall have all of the rights, powers and duties formerly vested in the Board of Funeral Service Practitioners,"
Section 4. (a) The initial Board of Services shall consist of five members appointed by the Governor, whose terms are subject to the conditions set forth in this section: three funeral practitioner members; and two puhlie members. One funeral practitioner member shall he appointed for a term of one year, which tern shall begin on July 1, 1981 whether or not the appointment is actually made on that date; one funeral practitioner member shall be appointed for a term of two years, which term shall begin on July 1, 1981; one public member shall he appointed for a term of three years, which ter n shall begin on July 1, 1981; one public member shall be appointed for a term of four years, which term shall begin on July 1, 1981; and one funeral practitioner member shall he appointed for a term of five years, which term shall begin on July 1, 1981.
(b) After the effective date of this Act, one or more new members shall he added to the Board each time the Board, by legislative Act, receives regulatory powers over an additional occupational group. Of the new members, one shall represent the additional occupational group being added, and such new, public members shall be added to the Board as will insure that public members continue to constitute not less than one-fourth of the total Board membership.
(c) Whenever a representative of a new occupational group is added to the Board, he shall cut short the term of (and take the place of) the funeral service practitioner member having the shortest amount of time remaining in his tern; provided however, that the provisions of this subsection shall no longer apply when funeral practitioner membership on the Board is reduced to one member.
Section 5. The provisions of this Act shall become effective sixty days after enactment into law.
Section 6. (a) The Division of Business and Occupational Regulation shall make, a progress report to the Sunset Committee, on or before October 1, 1981 which shall:
(1) recommend a schedule specifying those fees which, in the best interest of the public, it deems necessary; the amount which in its opinion should he charged for each fee, and the reasoning or method method used in reaching its determination.
(2) include the Division's recommendations relating to circumstances under which an occupational group should be regulated through licensure, certification, or registration.
(b) The Division shall make its Final Report, relating to the matters set forth in subsection (a) of this section, on or before January 15, 1982.
Section 7. (a) By October 1, 1981 the Board of Services shall make a progress report to the Sunset Committee. The report shall include, among other things:
(1) suggested occupational entry and renewal standards for each occupational group it regulates;
(2) a rough draft of the Board's proposed rules and regulations;
(3) recommendations concerning provisions which, in its opinion, are in the best interest of persons served by those regulated under Chapter 31 of Title 24, and those provisions which should be eliminated from Chapter 31 of Title 24.
(5) The Board shall make its final report to the Sunset Committee, relating to the matters set forth in subsection (a) of this Section, or or before February 1, 1982.
Approved July 13, 1981.