A Convenient Guide to Regulatory Activity in the Commonwealth
The Regulatory Alert is a new feature in the Legislative Record intended to assist General Assembly members as they keep up with the myriad regulations being proposed by agencies in the Commonwealth. The goal of this project is to provide a timely, simple, and accurate summary of the rules that are being proposed by agencies, boards, and commissions. Highlighting regulations when they are published as proposed regulations gives General Assembly members notice that the critical public participation phase of the rulemaking process is well underwayit is during the public participation process that the questions of an Assembly member or constituent may be most effectively communicated to the agency and examined by the individuals crafting the regulatory proposal.
The Regulatory Alert is not intended to be a substitute for the comprehensive information on agency rulemaking activity that is currently published biweekly in the Virginia Register of Regulations or the notification services offered by the Regulatory Town Hall Web site maintained by the Department of Planning and Budget. This addition to the Legislative Record is designed to assist all members as they monitor the development, modification, and repeal of administrative rules in the Commonwealth.
Access the Virginia Register of Regulations on-line at http://register.state.va.us/issfiles.htm or contact firstname.lastname@example.org or the Code Commission staff at (804) 786-3591 for further information.
Proposed Regulations Open to Public Comment
TITLE 1 ADMINISTRATION
Department of Human Resource Management (19:25 VA.R. 3666-3686)
1 VAC 55-20 Commonwealth of Virginia Health Benefits Program (amending 1 VAC 55-20-20, 1 VAC 55-20-30, 1 VAC 55-20-40, 1 VAC 55-20-60 through 1 VAC 55-20-90, 1 VAC 55-20-110, 1 VAC 55-20-130, 1 VAC 55-20-160, 1 VAC 55-20-210, 1 VAC 55-20-230 through 1 VAC 55-20-260, 1 VAC 55-20-280, 1 VAC 55-20-290, 1 VAC 55-20-300, 1 VAC 55-20-320 through 1 VAC 55-20-410, 1 VAC 55-20-430, 1 VAC 55-20-450 and 1 VAC 55-20-460; repealing 1 VAC 55-20-10, 1 VAC 55-20-50, 1 VAC 55-20-120 and 1 VAC 55-20-420)
The proposed amendments make changes to the existing regulation in order to bring it into compliance with legislation passed at the state and federal level, most notably the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA). The regulation also includes housekeeping changes that make it more consistent with current practice (for example, the use of electronic enrollment procedures). The revised regulation will (i) reduce the minimum number of hours per week that state employees have to work in order to be eligible for the health benefits from 40 hours per week to 32 hours per week, (ii) change the way state health benefits plans handle the discovery of an employee or other plan participant who was ineligible for coverage, (iii) add language that prevents employees of the state residing in another country and eligible for health coverage in that country from claiming state health benefits, and (iv) reduce the maximum period for which an employee who is reinstated can claim retroactive health benefits from 90 days to 60 days.
Written public comment is being accepted by the DHRM through October 31, 2003.
TITLE 2 AGRICULTURE
Pesticide Control Board (19:24 VA.R. 3462-3465)
2 VAC 20-30 Rules and Regulations Governing the Pesticide Fees Charged by the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Under the Virginia Pesticide Control Act (amending 2 VAC 20-30-20, 2 VAC 20-30-30 and 2 VAC 20-30-40)
The proposed amendments to the Boards existing regulation (i) delete obsolete references to pesticide product registration fees; (ii) establish certification periods and fees for commercial applicators and registered technicians; and (iii) establish fees for adding a category or subcategory to an existing commercial pesticide applicators certificate.
Written public comment is being accepted by the DACS through November 26, 2003. A public hearing to receive oral comment on the proposed amendments will be held in Richmond on October 16, 2003.
TITLE 4 CONSERVATION AND NATURAL RESOURCES
Board of Coal Mining Examiners (19:24 VA.R. 3465-3479)
4 VAC 25-20 Board of Coal Mining Examiners Certification Requirements (amending 4 VAC 25-20-20, 4 VAC 25-20-30, 4 VAC 25-20-40, 4 VAC 25-20-50, 4 VAC 25-20-70, 4 VAC 25-20-90, 4 VAC 25-20-100, 4 VAC 25-20-140, 4 VAC 25-20-190, 4 VAC 25-20-200, 4 VAC 25-20-210, 4 VAC 25-20-220, 4 VAC 25-20-250, 4 VAC 25-20-255, 4 VAC 25-20-259 and 4 VAC 25-20-390)
The proposed amendments to the existing regulation were the result of a periodic review conducted by the Board of Coal Mining Examiners, which sought input from the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy and industry representatives. The proposal (i) broadens the scope of reciprocity agreements to include conditions set by the reciprocating party and the Commonwealth, (ii) requires all underground shot-firers and hoisting engineers to be recertified every five years, (iii) amends the existing regulation to exclude certified underground electrical repairmen from performing electrical work at surface locations, (iv) requires all individuals seeking to get a gas detection qualification to demonstrate practical knowledge of mine gases in addition to taking the gas detection examination and demonstrating proper use of gas detection equipment, (v) requires advanced first-aid instructors to use materials and training aids necessary to deliver the required skills and training, (vi) includes additional requirements to be met by Board of Coal Mining Examiners instructors who teach initial training and continuing education courses, (vii) changes the length of time for which initial advanced first-aid certification is valid, and (viii) removes a stipulation from the existing regulation that requires the Division of Mines to mail notices to certificate holders regarding continuing education and other requirements to be met in order to keep their certification valid.
Written public comment is being accepted by the Board, within the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy, through October 11, 2003.
Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy (19:24 VA.R. 3479-3486)
4 VAC 25-125 Regulations Governing Coal Stockpiles and Bulk Storage and Handling Facilities (adding 4 VAC 25-125-10 through 4 VAC 25-125-40)
The proposed regulation establishes (i) general safety requirements for coal stockpiles, including those with underlying feeders; (ii) specific work safety procedures and equipment safety requirements for coal stockpiles with underlying feeders; and (iii) safety provisions for storage bins, bunkers, hoppers, and silos where unconsolidated bulk materials are stored, handled, or transported.
comment is being accepted by the Department of Mines, Minerals and Energy
through October 11, 2003.
TITLE 6 CRIMINAL JUSTICE AND CORRECTIONS
State Board of Juvenile Justice (19:25 VA.R. 3686-3693)
6 VAC 35-160 Regulations Governing Juvenile Record Information and The Virginia Juvenile Justice Information System (establishing 6 VAC 35-160-10 through 6 VAC 35-160-180). (Extension of Public Comment Period)
The State Board of Juvenile Justice gave notice of a public comment period on the proposed Regulations Governing Juvenile Record Information and the Virginia Juvenile Justice Information System (6 VAC 35-160) in the December 30, 2002, issue of the Virginia Register (19:8 VA.R. 1151-1154). The board is extending the public comment period on the proposal until September 30, 2003. A copy of comments received to date and changes being contemplated to the proposed regulation as published may be obtained from Donald R. Carignan, Regulatory Coordinator, Department of Juvenile Justice, P.O. Box 1110, Richmond, VA 23208-1110, telephone (804) 371-0743, FAX (804) 371-0773, or e-mail email@example.com.
6 VAC 35-170 Minimum Standards for Research Involving Human Subjects or Records of the Department of Juvenile Justice (adding 6 VAC 35-170-10 through 6 VAC 35-170-220)
The proposed regulation establishes minimum requirements for research on human subjects under the care of DJJ and a process for the review and approval of research proposals involving human subjects. It also establishes a process for reviewing and approving research on DJJ records and data that do not involve human subjects.
comment is being accepted by the DJJ through October 31, 2003.
TITLE 9 ENVIRONMENT
State Water Control Board (19:24 VA.R. 3486-3506)
9 VAC 25-580 Underground Storage Tanks: Technical Standards and Corrective Action Requirements (amending 9 VAC 25-580-10, 9 VAC 25-580-50, 9 VAC 25-580-130, 9 VAC 25-580-270, 9 VAC 25-580-320; repealing 9 VAC 25-580-290)
The proposed amendments (i) bring the underground storage tanks (UST) technical standards and corrective action requirements into agreement with the Code of Virginia and the federal UST regulation and (ii) delete the requirement for tank owners/operators to obtain a Corrective Action Permit from the department prior to initiating corrective actions.
Written public comment is being accepted by the State Water Control Board, within the Department of Environmental Quality, through October 10, 2003.
9 VAC 25-770 Financial Responsibility Requirements for Mitigation Associated with Tidal Dredging Projects (adding 9 VAC 25-770-10 through 9 VAC 25-770-180)
The proposed regulation specifies the mechanisms by which the State Water Control Board may require demonstration of financial responsibility for the completion of compensatory mitigation requirements for dredging projects in tidal waters permitted under the Virginia Water Protection Permit (VWPP) Program. Financial responsibility may be demonstrated by a letter of credit, certificate of deposit, or performance bond. When the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers requires demonstration of financial responsibility, then the mechanism and amount approved by the Corps shall be used to meet this requirement. This proposed regulation will replace the emergency regulation that became effective on December 4, 2002.
comment is being accepted by the State Water Control Board, within the
Department of Environmental Quality, through October 10, 2003.
TITLE 14 INSURANCE
State Corporation Commission (19:25 VA.R. 3720-3735)
14 VAC 5-310 Rules Governing Actuarial Opinions and Memoranda (amending 14 VAC 5-310-10, 14 VAC 5-310-20, 14 VAC 5-310-30, 14 VAC 5-310-40, 14 VAC 5-310-50,14 VAC 5-310-80, 14 VAC 5-310-90, and 14 VAC 5-310-100; adding 14 VAC 5-310-105; repealing 14 VAC 5-310-60,14 VAC 5-310-70, and 14 VAC 5-310-110)
The proposed revisions amend the rules governing actuarial opinions and memoranda required of life and health insurers by repealing 14 VAC 5-310-60, 14 VAC 5-310-70, and 14 VAC 5-310-110, adding 14 VAC 5-310-105 to address notification requirements for opinions in error and amended opinions, and revising all other sections of the chapter to require that companies subject to the provisions of § 38.2-3127.1 of the Code of Virginia annually file actuarial opinions, which, as defined by the rules, must be prepared by qualified appointed actuaries and based on an asset adequacy analysis that is to be documented in a confidential asset adequacy memorandum with a regulatory (confidential) asset adequacy issues summary. The proposed revisions delete provisions in current rules that describe authorized exemptions and filing exceptions. The proposed revisions also delete provisions that have allowed companies to file a statement of actuarial opinion not including asset adequacy analysis. The proposed revisions adopt for Virginia many of the provisions, including recommended language for actuarial opinions, adopted by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners in 2001 for its Actuarial Opinion and Memorandum Regulation.
comment is being accepted by the SCC through October 15, 2003. A public
hearing to receive oral comment is not planned but will be scheduled if
TITLE 18 PROFESSIONAL AND OCCUPATIONAL LICENSING
Board of Accountancy (19:25 VA.R. 3735-3738)
18 VAC 5-30 Continuing Professional Education Sponsor Registration Rules and Regulations (Repealing 18 VAC 5-30)
The proposed action repeals the existing Continuing Professional Education (CPE) Sponsor Registration Rules and Regulations. The Board of Accountancy deemed these regulations as repetitious and unduly burdensome on CPE sponsors in the Commonwealth in light of regulations and programs at the national level.
Written public comment is being accepted by the Board of Accountancy, within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, through October 31, 2003.
Board for Barbers and Cosmetology (19:25 VA.R. 3738-3753)
18 VAC 41-40 Wax Technician Regulations (adding 18 VAC 41-40-10 through 18 VAC 41-40-260)
Chapter 797 of the 2002 Acts of Assembly mandated that the Board of Barbers and Cosmetology promulgate regulations for the licensure/certification of wax technicians, wax technician instructors, waxing salons, and waxing schools. An emergency regulation to this effect has been in place since July 1, 2003. Prior to July 1, 2003, individuals and businesses providing waxing-related services and training were required to hold a cosmetology license issued by the Board of Barbers and Cosmetology. Rather than getting a cosmetology license, the proposed regulation allows individuals and businesses interested in providing only waxing-related services to do so without having to meet the more extensive requirements associated with obtaining a cosmetology license. Licenses/certifications are to be issued in the following categories: wax technician, wax technician instructor, waxing salon, and waxing school. In addition, the proposed regulation establishes requirements in order for an individual to be a wax technician examiner or chief examiner.
Written public comment is being accepted by the Board of Barbers and Cosmetology, within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, through October 24, 2003.
Board for Professional Soil Scientists and Wetland Professionals (19:25 VA.R. 3753-3764)
18 VAC 145-30 Wetland Delineators Certification Regulations (adding 18 VAC 145-30-10 through 18 VAC 145-30-160).
Chapter 784 of the Acts of the 2002 General Assembly created a certification designation for wetland delineators, amended the Virginia Board for Professional Soil Scientists to become the Virginia Board for Professional Soil Scientists and Wetland Professionals, and changed the boards membership to reflect the new certification program. The proposed new regulations set forth: (i) definitions, (ii) qualification standards for the wetland delineator certification, (iii) renewal and reinstatement standards, (iv) standards of practice and conduct, and (v) grounds for disciplinary action. Wetland delineator certification will first become effective on July 1, 2004.
Written public comment is being accepted by the Board of Professional Soil Scientists and Wetland Professionals, within the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation, through October 24, 2003. A public hearing on the proposed regulation will be held in Richmond on October 10, 2003.
TITLE 20 PUBLIC UTILITIES AND TELECOMMUNICATIONS
State Corporation Commission (19:25 VA.R. 3765-3779)
20 VAC 5-400 Telecommunications
(repealing 20 VAC 5-400-80).
Rules for Local Exchange Company Service Quality Standards, 20 VAC 5-427, are proposed to replace the existing Regulation Governing Service Standards for Local Exchange Telephone Companies; Penalty, 20 VAC 5-400-80 of the Telecommunications regulation, which predate competition and do not reflect provisions of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 and the many technological changes that have since occurred. The regulations apply to all certificated local exchange carriers (carriers) and prescribe a minimum acceptable level of quality of service under normal operating conditions. The regulations call for the design, construction, maintenance, and operation of network facilities in compliance with the latest edition of the National Electric Safety Code of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Inc., and all applicable commission orders and interconnection requirements under federal and state law. The regulations set carrier reporting and record retention requirements; information disclosure requirements for carriers as to their rates, charges and fees; carrier response requirements for reports of trouble and outage; customer complaint handling requirements; requirements for providing call intercept and directories; also, standards are proposed to measure carrier service quality performance and transmission standards. Requirements for auditing and remedial action plans are also proposed for carriers.
Written public comment is being accepted by the SCC through October 3, 2003. A public hearing to receive oral comment is not planned but will be scheduled if requested.
20 VAC 5-425 Rules Governing Enhanced 9-1-1 (E-911) Service (adding 20 VAC 5-425-10, 20 VAC 5-425-20, 20 VAC 5-425-30, and 20 VAC 5-425-40).
The proposed rules seek to bring additional reliability and accountability to the provisioning of E-911 service by addressing E-911 database reliability issues and requiring a Local Exchange Carrier (LEC) to: provide adequate and accurate customer information to the Public Safety Access Point (PSAP); submit database changes to the E-911 database provider within 24 hours of notification of the change; correct, or cause to be corrected, any incorrect automatic location identification record within 24 hours of notification by the PSAP; exclude from the E-911 database those telephone numbers not capable of accessing E-911 services; temporarily maintain residential access to E-911 services during the suspension of local service for nonpayment; and communicate to a PSAP such information that will assist the PSAP in ordering E-911 service consistent with an industry standard grade of service. The proposed rules also require that a LEC provide billing detail to each PSAP sufficient to identify the number of access lines served by the LEC in that PSAPs territory.
Written public comment is being accepted by the SCC through September 26, 2003. A public hearing to receive oral comment is not planned but will be scheduled if requested.