Meeting of the Board of Regents | June 2008
THE STATE EDUCATION DEPARTMENT / THE UNIVERSITY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK / ALBANY, NY 12234
Concept Discussion on Upcoming Regents’ Rules relating to Restoration Applications
June 4, 2008
Issue for Discussion
The purpose of this item is to provide information to, and obtain guidance from, the Committee with regard to an amendment to the Regents Rules relating to applications for the restoration of a professional license. This amendment would specify that an applicant’s response to the recommendation of the Committee on the Professions (COP) may not include new evidentiary material.
Reason(s) for Consideration
For Information and Advice.
This item will be discussed at the June 2008 Regents meeting.
If the Professional Practice Committee so directs, the proposed amendment will be prepared as a formal amendment to the Rules of the Board of Regents and presented for discussion and action this Fall.
A former licensee whose license has been revoked or surrendered for disciplinary reasons has a right to apply for the restoration of his or her license. Once applications are deemed complete, they are reviewed by the Division of Investigations, and following that review a hearing is held before a three-member panel of board members (Peer Panel) of the relevant profession. The panel forwards a report and recommendation for consideration by the Committee on the Professions. The COP meets with the individual and submits a report and recommendation to the Board of Regents. The Board then makes the final determination on the application.
In accordance with section 24.7(a)(2)(i) of the Rules of the Board of Regents, an applicant is allowed to submit “materials … in response to the Committee on the Professions’ recommendation to the Board of Regents.” Although the rule is not specific about the nature of the materials that may be submitted, a practice evolved that enabled petitioners to submit written statements agreeing or disagreeing with the COP recommendation based on evidence which had previously been submitted. Those submissions have been considered by the COP in making a final recommendation and by the Board of Regents in making its determination on the restoration application.
More recently, however, applicants have submitted evidentiary materials, such as newly prepared psychological reports, additional references, and newly obtained continuing education credits. Such evidence has not been subject to the investigation process, to cross-examination in the Peer Panel hearing, or to questioning by COP. Such investigation, cross-examination, and questioning are necessary to establish the authenticity, validity, and context of the evidence being presented. However, under the wording of the current Regents Rule, it is not possible to reject such submissions.
We are proposing an amendment to the Rules of the Board of Regents to specify that new evidence may not be included in a response to the report and recommendation of the COP, in order to provide a more orderly and effective review of evidentiary information submitted in support of a restoration application. The applicant would still be able to submit a written statement agreeing or disagreeing with the recommendation of the COP or correcting factual errors, but that statement would have to be based on evidence which had already been considered prior to the submission of the COP’s recommendation to the Regents. Prohibiting the introduction of new evidence when the case is going to the Board of Regents will lead to a more orderly process in which evidence is subject to review at a meeting at which the applicant may be questioned about the information.
We will have a conceptual discussion of this proposed revision and others that the members of this committee may wish to discuss.