Legislature(2017 - 2018)SENATE FINANCE 532
04/03/2018 09:00 AM FINANCE
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HOUSE BILL NO. 280 "An Act extending the termination date of the Board of Marital and Family Therapy; and providing for an effective date." 9:26:00 AM MEGAN HOLLAND, STAFF, REPRESENTATIVE ANDY JOSEPHSON, discussed the bill. She stated that the bill extended the Board of Marital and Family Therapy. She stated that the Board of Marital and Family Therapy regulated and licensed therapists and approved supervisors. The board also established and enforced training, education, and continuing education requirements of its licensees. The board currently oversaw 85 licensees in Alaska. The board received a full eight-year extension from Legislative Audit. She announced that there was no opposition received for extension of the board. KRIS CURTIS, LEGISLATIVE AUDITOR, ALASKA DIVISION OF LEGISLATIVE AUDIT, directed attention to document "A Sunset Review of the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development, Board of Marital and Family Therapy (board)," (copy on file). She stated that it was found that, overall, the board was serving the public's interest by effectively licensing and regulating marital and family therapists; and marital and family therapist supervisors. The board monitored licensees and worked to ensure that only qualified individuals' practices. It was also found that the board actively developed and adopted regulations to improve the industry. She recommended an eight-year extension. There were no recommendations made in the audit. She noted the standard information within the report. She noted that on page 6, there were the scheduled licensing activities. She stated that, as of January 2017, there were 85 active licensees, which was a 7 percent decrease when compared to the 2013 prior sunset audit. She noted the schedule of revenues and expenditures on page 8. He stated that the board had a surplus of approximately 68,000 as of March 31, 2017. She remarked that the board had operated with a surplus over the past several years. She shared that license fees were listed on page 7. She stated that all participating entities agreed that there should be an extension of the board. Co-Chair MacKinnon OPENED public testimony. 9:29:29 AM KAREN CUNNINGHAM, BOARD OF MARITAL AND FAMILY THERAPY, ANCHORAGE (via teleconference), testified in support of the bill. Co-Chair MacKinnon asked if Ms. Cunningham could speak to the decrease in licensees since the previous sunset audit. Ms. Cunningham explained that there was no graduate program in the state for marriage and family therapy, so it was required to obtain graduate education outside the state. She continued that the state had somewhat rigorous licensing requirements, as well as a lack of supervisors in the state. Co-Chair MacKinnon CLOSED public testimony. 9:32:12 AM Vice-Chair Bishop addressed that fiscal note. Co-Chair MacKinnon stated that the board cost more than the $21,400. She stated that the proposed board budget was approximately $93,000, but it was the portion directly related to the board. She stated that it was covered by receipt services from the licensees. Vice-Chair Bishop MOVED to report HB 280 out of Committee with individual recommendations and the accompanying fiscal note. There being NO OBJECTION, it was so ordered. HB 280 was REPORTED out of committee with a "do pass" recommendation and with one previously published fiscal impact note: FN 1(CED). 9:33:57 AM AT EASE 9:35:47 AM RECONVENED