Date of Adoption: May 25, 2001.
Purpose: To establish WAC chapters for implementation of the geologist licensing program in the Department of Licensing.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: Chapter 18.220 RCW.
Adopted under notice filed as WSR 01-07-101 on March 21, 2001.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 14, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.
Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making:
Pilot Rule Making:
or Other Alternative Rule Making:
Effective Date of Rule: Thirty-one days after filing.
May 25, 2001
Alan E. Rathbun
WAC 308-15-010 State board of licensing. (1) Meetings: The Washington state geologist licensing board, hereafter called the board, will hold its regular public meeting annually in March. Special public meetings may be held at such times and places as the board may find necessary. Public notice of all public meetings will be issued as required by the Open Public Meetings Act, chapter 42.30 RCW.
(2) Rules of order: The latest edition of Robert's Rules of Order will govern the conduct of business at meetings and sessions of the board.
(3) Officers: The board will elect a chair, a vice-chair and a secretary. Beginning with the March 2002 meeting, the board will elect officers for the ensuing year at its regular annual meeting.
(4) Quorum: A quorum at any regular or special meeting or session will consist of four members of the board.
(5) Licensed geologists: The board will maintain a roster of licensed geologists.
(2) "Professional specialty practice of a character satisfactory to the board" means that the applicant has qualifying work history pertinent to the specialty that meets the standards for professional geologic work defined above. Elements, typical applications, types of projects, and required knowledge, skills and abilities for the engineering geologist and hydrogeologist specialties are outlined in WAC 308-15-090.
(3) "Year of professional practice" means at least 1600 hours of work in the practice during a year. Examples of a "year of professional practice" include 200 eight-hour days or 160 ten-hour days during a year. Part-time work will be counted on a prorated basis.
(4) "Year of professional specialty practice" means at least 1600 hours of work in a specialty during a calendar year, per examples given in subsection (3) of this section.
(5) "Geologic interpretation," as applied to the practice of geology and its specialties, is the iterative process by which geologists, using generally accepted geologic principles, determine geologic history, origin and process from observation and testing of rock, soil and water characteristics, contents, distribution, orientation, lateral and vertical continuity; and resulting landforms.
(6) "Geologic mapping" is the process by which geologic observations, data and interpretations are gathered, located and portrayed, such as in plan view and on cross-sections. Information and data are gathered in a format on geologic maps and cross-sections, at a level of detail and at a frequency of data points appropriate for the application and the scale of the portrayal.
(7) "Grandparenting" means the issuance of a license as a geologist, engineering geologist, or hydrogeologist within one year after July 1, 2001, or for licensing in a new specialty within one year of recognition of the specialty by the board, without further written examination, if the applicant meets the requirements outlined in WAC 308-15-040 and, for a specialty, WAC 308-15-090.
(8) "Reciprocity" means the issuance of a license without examination as a geologist or specialty geologist to a person who holds a license or certificate of qualifications issued by proper authority of any state, territory, or possession of the United States, District of Columbia, or any foreign country, if the applicant meets the requirements outlined in WAC 308-15-040 and, for a specialty, WAC 308-15-090.
(2) Review the available options for licensure:
(a) Examination in WAC 308-15-050;
(b) Reciprocity in WAC 308-15-060; and
(c) Grandparenting in WAC 308-15-020(7).
If you are applying for licensure by examination, your application must be received by the date specified in the application instructions.
(3) Solicit references and transcripts in the format and on the forms as specified in the application instructions.
(4) Send your application forms to the address noted on the form, along with applicable fees, references and transcripts.
(1) You are of good moral character, as attested to by two references.
(2) You have graduated from an accredited college or university with a degree in geology, engineering geology, hydrogeology or one of the related geological sciences, or educational equivalents, and completed a minimum of 30 semester/45 quarter hours or their equivalent of course work in geological science. This includes classes in physical geology, historical geology, structural geology, mineralogy/petrology and sedimentary geology/stratigraphy. If you do not meet these requirements, you must demonstrate to the board that you have completed educational equivalents. You must document your college or university educational experience by submitting official sealed transcripts to the board.
(3) You have at least five years of professional geological or specialty practice or, if applying for a specialty, five years of specialty practice satisfactory to the board, after receipt of a bachelor's degree. The following education and experience criteria qualify toward accumulation of the required years of professional work:
(a) You will receive up to two years' credit, one year for each year of full time graduate study in geology, engineering geology, hydrogeology or one of the related geological sciences, as documented in the transcripts provided;
(b) You must have at least three years of geological experience under the supervision of state-licensed geologists or specialty geologists or others who, in the opinion of the board, are qualified to have responsible charge as provided by the information supplied on forms provided by the board.
(i) Your geological experience may include geological research or teaching at the university or college level which, in the judgment of the board, is comparable to experience obtained in the practice of geology or a specialty.
(ii) If requested by the board, you may be required to submit one or more reports which were prepared by you or where you contributed to their preparation.
(c) If you are applying under the grandparenting provisions in this chapter, you may comply with this requirement by providing documentation of geological experience where you were the person in responsible charge and meet the requirements in (b) of this subsection.
(4) You must have passed a geologist examination and, if applying for a specialty, a specialty examination, unless you are eligible for licensure by grandparenting. All examinations must be adopted by or acceptable to the board.
(2) The board has adopted the national Association of State Boards of Geology (ASBOG) standardized examination. You will be notified of the date and time of the examination when you receive your application packet.
(a) Nature of the examination: Information on the examination is available on the ASBOG website. The examination currently consists of two parts: Fundamentals of Geology (FG) and Practice of Geology (PG). Each part of the examination is four hours long.
(b) Testing location and date: The location and testing date will be posted on the department of licensing's geologist website. The examination is administered every March and September.
(c) Applying for the examination: To apply for the examination, you must submit the following to the board:
(i) Completed state geologist licensing application form; (ii) Professional and personal references required to document five years of professional experience; and
(iii) Official sealed transcripts.
(3) Fees: You must send in your examination and application fees with your application. The application must be received by the date specified in the application instructions. If you do not meet the requirements for licensing, only your examination fees will be refunded. Fees are listed in WAC 308-15-150.
(4) Special accommodations: If you have a disability, the board will provide accommodations consistent with the Americans with Disabilities Act. You should request special accommodations at least ninety days prior to the examination date.
(5) Notification of scoring: The board will notify you by mail of your examination score within ninety days of taking the examination.
(6) Failing the examination: If you fail the examination, for a fee you can request:
(a) A report showing the failed subject areas; or
(b) To review the examination, question by question, at a location specified by the board. You will be allowed to see the test and review those questions you failed and those you answered correctly. An answer key is not provided and you are not allowed to keep or copy the examination.
(7) Retake of examination: You must submit a request on a form provided by the board and the required fees to retake either part of the examination.
(1) Your education and experience qualifications must meet the requirements of WAC 308-15-040 and, if applying for specialty geologist license, WAC 308-15-090;
(2) You currently must hold a valid geologist or specialty geologist license, registration, or certification issued by a state or jurisdiction approved by the board; and
(3) You must have passed the geologist examination adopted by or acceptable to the board. If you are applying for a specialty geologist license, you must also have passed a specialty geologist examination adopted by or acceptable to the board.
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(a) All figures, maps, and plates bound within final reports or documents do not need to be individually stamped, signed and dated. Unbound final figures, maps, and plates must be individually stamped, signed and dated.
(b) Preliminary or draft geology or specialty geology work does not have to be stamped, but the documents and all associated figures, maps, and plates must be clearly marked as preliminary or draft.
(2) You must stamp, sign, and date every final geology or specialty geology design and specification that is prepared by you or prepared under your supervision or direction. Preliminary or draft geology or specialty geology design and specification drawings do not have to be stamped, but each design and specification must be clearly marked as preliminary or draft.
(3) If you stamp, sign and date work that you have only reviewed, you are responsible to the same extent as if you prepared the report, design or specification.
(2) Address changes: Your renewal notice will be sent to the address of record. You must notify the geologist licensing board in writing within thirty days of any address changes.
(3) Renewal date: Your license renewal date will be your birth date.
(a) If your license is issued during the first year of the program (July 1, 2001, through June 30, 2002), your renewal date will be the first birth date to occur after July 1, 2002. However, if your next birth date is within three months of the initial date of issuance of the license, your original license will expire on the second birthday following issuance of your original license.
(b) If your license is issued after June 30, 2002, your renewal after the first year of the program will be for a one-year period, due on your birth date. However, if your next birth date is within three months of the initial date of issuance of your license, your license will expire on the second birthday following issuance of your original license.
(4) Renewal fee and late fee: You must pay the prescribed renewal fee to the department of licensing on or before the expiration date. If you fail to pay your license renewal fee within ninety days following the expiration date, you must pay the renewal fee plus a late fee equal to one additional year's renewal fee.
(5) Reinstatement: In addition to the fees outlined in subsection (4) of this section, if you fail to pay a renewal fee for a period of five years or more, you may be reinstated upon payment of all delinquent renewal fees, the current year's renewal fee, and a late fee equal to an additional year's renewal fee. In addition to the payment of delinquent fees and a reinstatement fee, you must submit the following:
(a) A summary of the current law and rules governing geologists;
(b) A professional resume of your geologist activities during the delinquent period, including licensure in another jurisdiction, with sufficient detail to demonstrate to the board that your skills have been maintained; and
(c) A detailed explanation of the circumstances surrounding the reason you allowed your license to expire.
(a) Engineering geologist.
(i) Elements of the engineering geologist specialty: In addition to tasks commonly performed by licensed geologists, the practice of engineering geology includes the designation and classification of geotechnical soil and rock units using engineering soil and rock classification systems. The relationship between the strength characteristics of soil and rock, the effects of ground and surface water and current and past surficial geologic processes, including slope, fluvial and coastal processes, as well as deep-seated geologic processes such as volcanic activity and seismicity, on landform development are interpreted. Geotechnical zones or domains are designated for each site or area based on soil and rock strength characteristics, common landforms, related geologic processes or other pertinent factors. Proposed developmental modifications such as removing vegetation, using various types of earth materials in construction, applying loads to foundations, constructing cut or fill slopes, and modifying ground or surface water characteristics, are then evaluated and, where appropriate, analyzed to predict likely changes in types and rates of surficial geologic processes. Surficial and deep-seated geologic processes are likewise evaluated and analyzed to predict their effect on proposed development or use.
(ii) Typical engineering geologic applications and types of projects: Engineering geology is applied during all project phases, from project conception through planning, design, construction and, where warranted, closure. Planning-level engineering geology work is commonly conducted in response to forest practice regulations, critical areas ordinances for various jurisdictions, and the State Environmental Policy Act. Typical planning-level engineering geology applications include: Timber harvest planning, proposed siting of residential and commercial developments and other buildings and facilities, and alternative route selection for roads, rail lines, trails and utilities. Site-specific civil engineering projects where engineering geologic services are commonly applied include: Road, trail and railroad cuts, fills, and tunnels; foundations for bridges and other drainage structures; retaining walls, dams, buildings, water towers, power transmission line towers, slope, channel and shoreline stabilization facilities, fish ladders, ski lifts and other structures; landings for logging; airport landing strips, rock bolt systems and blasting plans.
(iii) Knowledge, skills and abilities required for licensure as an engineering geologist: In addition to being licensed as a geologist in the state of Washington, you must also possess the following knowledge, skills and abilities in order to be licensed as an engineering geologist:
(A) Knowledge of the geology of the state of Washington; (B) Skill and ability in use of geotechnical field classification systems for soil and rock;
(C) Ability to recognize landforms resulting from surficial and deep-seated geologic processes;
(D) Knowledge of and ability to evaluate and analyze soil and rock mechanical relationships related to geologic materials and surficial geologic processes;
(E) Knowledge of the appropriate application of geotechnical laboratory testing methods;
(F) Ability to interpret and portray engineering geologic information and data three-dimensionally, at a scale appropriate for site-specific application; and
(G) Knowledge and understanding of the principles of grading codes, as well as critical areas, shoreline and other pertinent regulations.
(i) Elements of the hydrogeologist specialty. In addition to tasks commonly performed by licensed geologists, the practice of hydrogeology involves the study of the movement of water and other fluids through geologic materials, the mechanical, physical, chemical, and thermal interaction of fluids with geologic materials, and the transport of energy and chemical constituents by fluids in the subsurface.
(ii) Typical hydrogeologic applications and types of projects. Typical applications include regional or basin ground water resource quantity and quality characterization and development; protection of ground water resources; waste site subsurface characterization; design of vadose and saturated zone cleanups; design, testing, and construction supervision of test, production, recharge, injection, remediation, dewatering and resource protection wells; fluid flow and transport modeling; dewatering system design; and evaluation of potential impacts caused by proposed activities on the quantity and quality of ground water and potential mitigations.
(iii) Knowledge, skills and abilities required for licensure as a hydrogeologist: In addition to being licensed as a geologist in the state of Washington, you must also possess the following knowledge, skills and abilities in order to be licensed as a hydrogeologist:
(A) Knowledge of the hydrogeology of the state of Washington;
(B) Knowledge of and skill in applying the principles of vadose and saturated zone hydraulics, and ground water quantity and quality;
(C) Knowledge of federal, state, county and local regulations applicable to ground water resources;
(D) Ability to apply elementary soil and rock mechanics in relation to ground water, including the description of soil and rock samples; and
(E) Ability to prepare and interpret logs as they relate to subsurface fluid movement, interaction with geologic materials, and transport of energy and chemical constituents.
(2) Process required for licensure in a specialty.
(a) Documentation of specialty experience: To obtain a specialty license, you must provide a documented record of five years of experience in the applicable geologic specialty, per WAC 308-15-040.
(b) Documentation of specialty education and training: In addition to the educational requirements outlined for geologists under WAC 308-15-040, you must complete advanced study, seminars or on-the-job training pertinent to the specialty and acceptable to the board. Examples of academic training pertinent to engineering geology include classes in engineering geology, environmental geology, rock and soil mechanics, geomorphology, volcanology and seismicity. Examples of seminars pertinent to engineering geology include slope stability, rock slope engineering, tunneling, blast design, shoreline processes and engineering geologic field methods short courses. Examples of academic training pertinent to hydrogeology include classes in hydrogeology, geomorphology, hydraulics and advanced geochemistry. Examples of seminars pertinent to hydrogeology include classes taught by experts in the discipline, classes offered in hydrogeologic computer modeling, and various seminars and symposia on ground water, geochemical forensics and ground water law and regulations.
(c) Examination requirements for specialty licensure: During the period July 1, 2001, to June 30, 2002, a license in a specialty can be obtained by "grandparenting" as outlined in WAC 308-15-040. Following the period ending June 30, 2002, a license in a specialty can be obtained through reciprocity, as outlined in WAC 308-15-040. For those who are not eligible for grandparenting, a specialty examination is required in addition to the examination described for geologist licensure in WAC 308-15-040. An examination will be required for each specialty license and will be administered as needed.
(1) To determine whether an applicant for licensing meets the minimum criteria for licensing to practice as a geologist in this state and the board proposes to deny the application;
(2) To determine whether a person is in compliance with the terms and conditions of a final order or agreement previously issued by the board;
(3) To determine whether an applicant for or in the examination process will be denied to sit for future examinations; and
(4) To determine whether a license holder requesting renewal or reinstatement has submitted all required information and meets minimum criteria for renewal or reinstatement.
(a) The application for the license, renewal, reinstatement or approval and all associated documents; and
(b) All documents relied on by the program in proposing to deny the application, renewal, reinstatement or approval; and (c) All correspondence between the applicant for license, renewal, reinstatement or approval and the program regarding the application.
(2) Final order or agreement: The preliminary record to determine compliance with a previously issued final order or agreement will include:
(a) The previously issued final order or agreement; and (b) All reports or other documents submitted by, or at the direction of, the license holder, in full or partial fulfillment of the terms of the final order or agreement; and
(c) All correspondence between the license holder and the program, regarding compliance with the final order or agreement; and
(d) All documents relied on by the program that show the license holder has failed to comply with the previously issued final order or agreement.
(2) The parties or their representatives may present written documentation. The presiding officer will designate the date by which written documents must be submitted by the parties.
(3) The presiding officer may, at his or her discretion, entertain oral argument from the parties or their representatives.
(4) No witnesses may appear to testify.
(5) In addition to the record, the presiding officer may employ agency expertise as a basis for a decision.
(6) The presiding officer will not issue an oral order. Within ten days of the final date for submission of materials or oral argument, if any, the presiding officer will enter an initial order.