WSR 08-16-114



[ Filed August 5, 2008, 1:55 p.m. ]

Original Notice.

Exempt from preproposal statement of inquiry under RCW 34.05.310(4).

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: WAC 246-14-020 Definitions, related to uniform procedures for complaint resolution - eliminating definition of "good cause."

Hearing Location(s): Department of Health, Point Plaza East, Room 153, 310 Israel Road S.E., Tumwater, WA 98501, on September 8, 2008, at 1:00 p.m.

Date of Intended Adoption: September 10, 2008.

Submit Written Comments to: Margaret Gilbert, Department of Health, P.O. Box 47873, Olympia, WA 98504-7873, web site, fax (360) 236-4930, by August 29, 2008.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Margaret Gilbert by August 22, 2008, TTY (800) 833-6388 or 711.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: The proposal would eliminate a definition that is no longer needed. Prior to 2007 rule amendments, a definition of "good cause" was needed to provide consistency for investigations, legal and program managers approving extensions of basic time periods. After the 2007 rule amendments, managers no longer grant extensions. Instead they monitor progress continually and can make resource allocations as needed. The definition of "good cause" is no longer needed because extensions are no longer the enforcement mechanism for timelines.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: Prior to 2007, timelines were managed by granting extensions to basic time periods for complaint processing. The definition of "good cause" provided consistency for extensions. The rules were changed in 2007 and management oversight of timelines under this chapter was changed from approval of extensions to continuous management oversight. Since extensions are no longer necessary, the definition of good cause is no longer needed. This proposal would eliminate the definition.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 18.130.095.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 18.130.095.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Name of Proponent: Department of health, governmental.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Margaret Gilbert, Department of Health, (360) 236-4913; Implementation: Bill Kellington, Department of Health, (360) 236-4610; and Enforcement: Karen Jensen, Department of Health, (360) 236-4600.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. A small business economic impact statement (SBEIS) was not prepared. Under RCW 19.85.025 and 34.05.310 (4)(b), a SBEIS is not required for proposed rules that relate only to internal governmental operations and that are not subject to violation by a nongovernmental party.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. The agency did not complete a cost-benefit analysis under RCW 34.05.328. RCW 34.05.328 (5)(b)(ii) exempts rules that relate only to internal governmental operations that are not subject to violation by a nongovernment party.

August 5, 2008

Mary C. Selecky



AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending WSR 07-24-073, filed 12/4/07, effective 1/4/08)

WAC 246-14-020   Definitions.   (1) A "report" is information received by the department of health which raises concern about conduct, acts or conditions related to a credential holder or applicant or about the credential holder or applicant's ability to practice with reasonable skill and safety. If the disciplining authority determines a report warrants an investigation, the report becomes a "complaint."

(2) ((Basic time periods may be exceeded for "good cause." Good cause is determined on a case-by-case basis, balancing all relevant factors including risk of harm to the public. Some examples of relevant factors may be circumstances not within the control of the department or the disciplining authority, need for expert review not available within the department or the disciplining authority, and activities which cannot be completed within the time period despite effort to do so.

(3))) "Days" are calendar days unless otherwise indicated. If a time period would end on a Saturday, Sunday, or state holiday, that time period will end on the next business day.

(((4))) (3) "Enhanced management oversight" is enhanced direction of a case imposed by department management as an enforcement mechanism when a basic time period is exceeded. Management will ensure the case moves through the stage promptly. Some examples of enhanced direction may be staffing changes, resource reallocation, and work planning.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 18.130.095. 07-24-073, 246-14-020, filed 12/4/07, effective 1/4/08. Statutory Authority: RCW 18.130.095(1). 00-10-114, 246-14-020, filed 5/3/00, effective 7/2/00.]

Washington State Code Reviser's Office