- Report Published -
|The Revision of Title 54 of the Code of Virginia|
|Virginia Code Commission|
|HJR 32 (Regular Session, 1984)|
|House Joint Resolution No. 32 of the 1984 Acts of Assembly directed the Virginia Code Commission to make a careful study of Title 54 of the Code of Virginia and report its findings in the form of a recodification of the title to the Governor and the General Assembly of Virginia. Reasons given for the recodification were that Title 54 has not been generally revised since 1914 and that the creation of the Department of Health Regulatory Boards in 1911 to improve the effectiveness of health regulatory boards resulted in the need to clarify the applicability of the general provisions of Title 54 to the boards within the Department of Commerce and the Department of Health Regulatory Boards.|
In accordance with the mandate, the study has been completed. The result is a recodification of Title 54 into a new Title 54.1, comprised of five subtitles. The first subtitle includes the general provisions relating to the regulatory boards. Subtitle II pertains to the professions and occupations regulated by the Department of Commerce and boards within the Department. Subtitle III contains statutes regarding the professions and occupations regulated by boards within the Department of Health Professions (formerly the Department of Health Regulatory Boards). Subtitle IV includes statutes pertaining to attorneys and Subtitle V contains provisions relating to occupations regulated by local governing bodies. Due to this recodification several amendments to sections in Titles 2.1, 6.1, 9, 18.2 and 59.1 will be necessary and § 13.1-545 will be repealed.
The Commission has rewritten and combined sections or parts of sections to clarify provisions and to eliminate archaic or redundant language and obsolete provisions. Drafting notes following each section in proposed Title 54.1 explain the changes. The principal changes made by the Code Commission in the revision of Title 54 include:
1. Names of regulatory boards. The names of several of the regulatory boards within the Department of Commerce were standardized by changing "of" to "for" and by removing references to "Virginia," "State," "Examiners" and f1Certification." The names of the regulatory boards within the Department of Health Professions were also standardized by removing references to "Virginia," "State" and "Examiners."
2. Department of Health Professions. The name of the Department of Health Regulatory Boards was changed to the Department of Health Professions and the name of the Council of Health Regulatory Boards changed to Board of Health Professions.
3. Athletic Board. The Athletic Board was relocated from Title 9 to proposed Title 54.1.
4. Branch Pilots. This chapter was significantly revised because many of its provisions were obsolete. Outdated penalty provisions were replaced with a general penalty section making any violation of the chapter a Class 1 misdemeanor. A provision was added requiring the Board for Branch Pilots to comply with the Administrative Process Act.
5. Class B Contractors. References to Class B contractors licenses were changed to registration to conform with the definition of "licensure" and "registration" in the general provisions of the subtitle.
6. Cosmetologists. References to cosmetics and the treatment of skin and nails were deleted from the Cosmetology chapter.
7. Penalties for violations. The penalties for violations of regulations or provisions of the chapter and subtitle were standardized and classified as Class 1 misdemeanors. Exceptions are noted in drafting comments found at the end of proposed sections.
8. Dealers in Junk and Secondhand Articles. This chapter (existing Chapter 21 of Title 54) is being repealed because there has been no indication that it is being used. Municipal corporations have the authority to regulate dealers in secondhand goods under § 15.1-866 of the Code of Virginia.
9. Antique Dealers. This chapter (existing Chapter 21.1 of Title 54) is being repealed. It is applicable to only one locality and that locality does not use it.
10. Professional Associations. This chapter (existing Chapter 25 of Title 54) is being repealed because research indicates that there are no professional associations filed as required by this chapter.
11. General provisions for health regulatory boards. Chapter 24 in proposed Subtitle III is the general provisions chapter and sets out for the first time the responsibilities and duties which are common to all health regulatory boards within the Department of Health Professions.
12. Separation of certain chapters. The Boards of Professional Counselors, Psychology and Social Work are presented in individual chapters. The Board of Pharmacy and Drug Control Act have also been set out as separate chapters.
13. Attorneys. The chapter was significantly revised and updated. Requirements regarding law-readers and admission of law professors to the Virginia State Bar were changed. Standards for license revocation were revised and provisions regarding solicitation of professional employment were rewritten.
The outline of proposed Title 54.1 and the revision of Title 54 of the Code of Virginia follow this text as Appendix I. Tables following the revision in Appendix II cross-reference the sections of Title 54 with equivalent sections in proposed Title 54.1 and vice versa. Appendix III lists additional sections in the Code of Virginia which must be amended, added or repealed due to the recodification.
During the course of its deliberations, the Code Commission held numerous open working sessions attended by representatives of state agencies and trade and professional groups affected by the revision. The members of the Commission appreciate the time and effort of those who participated in this study, especially David R. Hathcock, Director of the Department of Commerce, and Bernard L. Henderson, Jr., Director of the Department of Health Regulatory Boards.