SB 0069 Creates the Small Business Regulatory Fairness Board to serve as liaison between agencies and small businesses
LR Number:0450S.09T Fiscal Note:0450-09
Committee:Financial and Governmental Organization, Veterans' Affairs & Elections
Last Action:09/10/03 - Motion to override Governor's veto-Defeated (Yeckel) Journal page:
Effective Date:August 28, 2003
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Current Bill Summary

CCS/HCS/SCS/SB 69 - This act requires state agencies which are proposing rules to consider alternative compliance methods for small businesses and to prepare a small business impact statement. The provisions of this act shall not apply to rules that do not require an agency to interpret or describe the requirements of a statute. An agency, upon request by the Board, shall conduct a hearing on a proposed rule. The Board shall not request more than 12 hearings per quarter. Any proposed rule that is required to have a small business impact statement but fails to include the statement shall be invalid.

For proposed rules that affect small business, the state agency must submit a small business participation statement to the Board within 30 days after a public hearing is held, or if no hearing is held, then at least 30 days prior to the issuance of a final order of rulemaking.

The act creates the Small Business Regulatory Fairness Board. The joint committee on administrative rules will provide staff for the Board. The Board shall provide agencies with input regarding proposed rules, consider requests from small business owners for review of agency rules, review agency rules and make recommendations to the agency and general assembly regarding the need for a rule or legislation, conduct hearings and solicit input from regulated small businesses and prepare an annual evaluation report to the Governor. The Board shall not have the power to interfere with an agency or administrative enforcement action, intervene in legal actions between a small business and an agency, or subpoena witnesses or documents.

The Board shall consist of two members appointed by the Governor, one member appointed by the Lieutenant Governor, one member who is chair of the minority business advocacy commission, two members appointed by the House of Representatives, two members appointed by the senate, one member appointed by the speaker of the House and one member appointed by the President Pro Tempore of the Senate. Except for initial members, appointed members shall serve a term of three years.

Small business owners may petition an agency objecting to any rule, and the agency shall forward the petition to the commissioner of administration and the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules. The agency may determine the petition warrants adoption of amended or new rules, or may determine no additional action is necessary. A small business may seek the filing of petition by the Board for the adoption, amendment or repeal of any rule. The Board may make an evaluation report to the governor and General Assembly on rulemaking proceedings, comments from small business and the response of the state agency. The Governor or General Assembly may subsequently take such action in response to the evaluation report and state agency response as they find appropriate.

The Board shall provide to the head of each state agency a list of any rules adopted by the agency that affect small business and have generated complaints or concerns, including any rules that the board determines may duplicate, overlap or conflict with other rules or exceed statutory authority. Within 45 days after being notified by the board of the list, the agency shall submit a written report to the board in response to the complaints or concerns.

Any agency that can assess administrative penalties or fines shall consider waiving or reducing such fines upon a business if the business meets certain conditions relating to correction of the violation by the business or the unintentional nature of the violation. The act sets out conditions where the agency is not required to consider the waiver or reduction of the fine.

A small business may seek a declaratory judgment if there is a claim of a material violation by the state agency regarding the small business impact statement for the proposed rule.

This act is similar to HCS/HB 322 (2003).