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09.13 - Board of Professional Land Surveyors - Final Regulations

FINAL ACTION ON REGULATIONS
MARYLAND REGISTER, VOLUME 44, ISSUE 9,
FRIDAY, APRIL 28, 2017

Title 09
DEPARTMENT OF LABOR, LICENSING, AND REGULATION
Subtitle 13 BOARD OF PROFESSIONAL LAND SURVEYORS

09.13.08 Continuing Professional Competency Requirements

Business Occupations and Professions Article, §§15-314(f), 15-315, and 15-316, Annotated Code of Maryland

Notice of Final Action
[17-026-F]

On April 5, 2017, the Board for Professional Land Surveyors adopted amendments to Regulations .02—.10, .12, .16, and .17 under COMAR 09.13.08 Continuing Professional Competency Requirements. This action, which was proposed for adoption in 44:2 Md. R. 115—118 (January 20, 2017), has been adopted with the nonsubstantive changes shown below.

Effective Date: May 8, 2017.

Attorney General's Certification

In accordance with State Government Article, §10-113, Annotated Code of Maryland, the Attorney General certifies that the following changes do not differ substantively from the proposed text. The nature of the changes and the basis for this conclusion are as follows:

Regulation .03 is being amended to add §C, which enables licensees to carry over up to 12 continuing competency credits earned in excess of required 24 credits, provided that the credits intended for a carryover have been earned on or before December 31, 2018.

.03 Requirements.
  A.— B. (proposed text unchanged).
  C. A licensee may carry over no more than 12 CPC units earned in excess of 24 CPC units, provided that the CPC units intended for the carryover have been earned on or before December 31, 2018. No carryover shall be permitted for any excess CPC units earned after January 1, 2019.

JOHN V. METTEE III
Chair
Board for Professional Land Surveyors

.02 Definitions.
A. (text unchanged)
B. Terms Defined.
(1) – (3) (text unchanged)
[(4) “Category A/Category B activities” means the types of activities set forth in Regulation .05 of this chapter.]
[(5)] (4) “College [unit/semester/quarter] credit hour” means the credit for a course described in [§B(7)]§B(6) of this regulation, offered by a university, college, or community college.
[(6)] (5) – [(9)] (8) (text unchanged)
[(10)] (9) “Qualifying activity” means an activity that meets the criteria set forth in Regulation [.03] 04 of this chapter.
[(11) “Seminar” means a meeting or meetings with an approved provider involving a discussion on a specific topic related to the practice of land surveying.
(12) “Workshop” means a meeting or meetings of general sessions and individual groups involving discussions of topics related to the practice of land surveying.]

.03 [Qualifying Activities.] Requirements.
A. [In order for an activity to be considered a qualifying activity, the activity must meet all of the following criteria:
(1) Maintain and enhance professional competency of professional land surveyors or property line surveyors; and
(2)Foster improvement, advancement, and extension of professional skills and knowledge related to the practice of land surveying or property line surveying.] A licensee shall complete, as a condition of a license renewal in each individual 2-year renewal cycle, a minimum of 24 CPC units earned from the participation in and upon completion of qualifying activities described in Regulation .04.
B. [Qualifying activities include both Category A activities and Category B activities, as described in Regulation .05 of this chapter.] A minimum of 4 CPC units in every individual 2-year renewal cycle shall be earned from the participation in and upon completion of qualifying activities with content areas related to the following:
(1) Minimum Standards of Practice;
(2) Legal cases, commentaries, and other related materials as they apply to the law of land boundaries in Maryland;
(3) The awareness of ethical concerns and conflicts;
(4) An enhanced familiarity with the codes of conduct;
(5) An understanding of standards of practice or care; or
(6) Similar topics aimed at maintaining, improving, or expanding the skills set and knowledge necessary to practice land surveying services or property line surveying services in the most ethical and responsible manner.
[C. The determination of whether the activity constitutes a qualifying activity is within the sole discretion of the Board.]

.04 [Requirements] Qualifying Activities.
[A. A licensee shall complete, as a condition of a license renewal, a minimum of 24 CPC units in each individual 2-year licensing term, as follows:
(1) All 24 CPC units may be earned from Category A activities; or
(2) At least 16 CPC units shall be earned from Category A activities, and not more than 8 CPC units may be earned from Category B activities. ]
In order for an activity to be considered a qualifying activity, the activity must meet the following criteria:
A. Maintain and enhance professional competency of professional land surveyors or property line surveyors; and
B. Foster improvement, advancement, and extension of professional skills and knowledge related to the practice of land surveying or property line surveying.
[B. As part of compliance with CPC requirements set forth in these regulations, a licensee shall complete, as a condition of a license renewal, a minimum of 6 CPC units in every other individual 2-year licensing term in content areas related to the following:
(1) Minimum Standards of Practice;
(2) Legal cases, commentaries, and other related materials as they apply to the law of land boundaries in Maryland; or
(3) Qualifying course or activity with content areas related to:
(a) The awareness of ethical concerns and conflicts;
(b) An enhanced familiarity with the codes of conduct;
(c) An understanding of standards of practice or care; or
(d) Similar topics aimed at maintaining, improving, or expanding the skills set and knowledge necessary to provide surveying services in the most ethical and responsible manner.
C. The 6 CPC units described in §B of this regulation shall be earned from Category A activities and shall be a part of, and not in addition to, the minimum number of CPC units otherwise required for a license renewal.
D. A maximum of 12 CPC units earned in excess of 24 CPC units that are required for a license renewal during the licensing term can be carried forward to apply as credit toward the next licensing term. The carried forward CPC units shall be applied to the same category in which they were earned. ]

.05 [Categories of Qualifying Activities] Determination of Qualifying Activities by the Board.
[A. Category A Activities.
(1) Category A activities are those activities that meet the criteria and objectives set forth in the Regulation .03 of this chapter.
(2) Category A activities shall:
(a)Be formally organized and structured as follows:
(i) University, college, and community college courses;
(ii) Professional workshops related to the practice of land surveying;
(iii) Seminars related to the practice of land surveying;
(iv) Technical presentations related to the practice of land surveying; and
(v) Other similar structured educational activities in which the teaching methodology consists primarily of systematic presentation of subjects related to the practice of land surveying, as such activities may from time to time be preapproved by the Board.
(b) Provide for clear outcome measures in the form of a test, report, study, research paper, or other appropriate form or method acceptable to the Board;
(c) Have content areas that include at least one of the following:
(i) Issues related to COMAR 09.13.06;
(ii) Issues related to COMAR 09.13.07;
(iii) Issues related to business, ethics, and professional practices, as related to the practice of land surveying or property line surveying; or
(iv) Other appropriate issues or content areas acceptable to the Board; and
(d) Be presented through one or more of the following modalities;
(i) Live;
(ii) Televised;
(iii) Videotaped;
(iv) Audiotaped;
(v) On line; or
(vi) Through other appropriate format acceptable to the Board.
B. Category B Activities.
(1) Category B activities are those activities that meet the criteria and objectives set forth in the Regulation .03 of this regulation. Category B activities shall be organized as either structured educational activities or unstructured educational activities.
(2) Structured educational Category B activities shall:
(a) Be formally organized and structured as follows:
(i) University, college, and community college courses;
(ii) Professional workshops related to the practice of land surveying;
(iii) Seminars related to the practice of land surveying;
(iv) Technical presentations related to the practice of land surveying; or
(v) Other similar structured educational activities in which the teaching methodology consists primarily of systematic presentation of subjects related to the practice of land surveying, as such activities may from time to time be preapproved by the Board; and
(b) Have at least one content area that focuses on the following:
(i) Development of oral and written skills aimed at improving licensee’s methods of practice or operations as a professional land surveyor or a property line surveyor;
(ii) Development of business skills, traits, and patterns aimed at ensuring the delivery of ethical and competent land surveying or property line surveying services; or
(iii) Other appropriate issues or content areas acceptable to the Board.
(3) Unstructured educational Category B activities may include the following:
(a) Teaching of land surveying and related subject matters;
(b) Mentoring activities;
(c) Serving as a single or first author of an original paper on the land surveying subject matter published in peer-reviewed journals or textbooks of distinction in their field;
(d) Serving as a single or first author of an original published book on a land surveying subject matter that exhibits excellence in scholarship and has a significant impact or influence on the directions of the land surveying; or
(e) Other unstructured or nontraditional activities that may from time to time be preapproved by the Board.
C. The determination of the appropriate category of the activities is within the sole discretion of the Board. ]
The determination of whether the activity constitutes a qualifying activity is within the discretion of the Board.

.06 Nonqualifying Activities.
[A licensee may not earn credits for activities that do not meet the criteria set forth in the Regulation .03 of this chapter, including, but not limited to, the following activities] Activities that do not meet the criteria set forth in Regulation .04 of this chapter shall be considered to be non-qualifying activities, including, but not limited to, the following:
A.— D. (text unchanged)
E. Other [nonqualifying] activities that, in the Board’s opinion, are not directly related to the practice of land surveying or property line surveying.

.07 Sources of Credit and Determination of [Units’ Value] Units.
[A. A licensee may earn the applicable number of CPC units in the appropriate category of activities in accordance with the following schedule:
(1) 1 college or unit semester hour — 15 CPC units;
(2) 1 college or unit quarter hour — 10 CPC units;
(3) 1 continuing education unit — 10 CPC units;
(4) 1 contact hour of professional development in course work seminars, or professional or technical presentations made at meetings, conventions, or conferences — 1 CPC unit;
(5) Subject to criteria set forth in Regulation .05 of this chapter, original published paper on the land surveying subject matter — up to 2 CPC units;
(6) Subject to criteria set forth in Regulation .05 of this chapter, original published book on the land surveying subject — up to 8 CPC units;
(7) Mentoring — 3 CPC units; and
(8) Except for regular employment, teaching of land surveying and related subjects, subject to the following limitations:
(a) For the first time presentation, a presenter may claim credit for the activity that is equivalent to two times the number of CPC units awarded by the Board for the activity; and
(b) Unless the presentation had been substantially modified and updated for the subsequent presentations, a presenter may not claim credits for repeat presentations of the same material.]
A. A licensee may earn the CPC units by any of the following methods:
(1) Attending and successfully completing qualifying activities in which the teaching methodology consists primarily of systematic presentation of subjects related to the practice of land or property line surveying, as such activities may from time to time be preapproved by the Board;
(2) Subject to limitations set forth in this Regulation, teaching of, lecturing or instructing on the subjects related to professional land or property line surveying in the environment described in §A(1) of this regulation;
(3) Serving as a mentor within the framework preapproved by the Board to an individual who is pursuing a path to licensure as a professional land surveyor;
(4) Developing examination content questions accepted for use on both national and State specific examinations; or
(5) Other appropriate methods that may from time to time be approved by the Board.
[B. The final determination of value, sources, and number of credits is within the sole discretion of the Board.]
B. A licensee may earn the applicable number of CPC units in accordance with the following conversion schedule:
(1) 1 college credit hour — 5 CPC units;
(2) 1 contact hour of professional development work, or professional or technical presentations made at meetings, conventions, or conferences — 1 CPC unit;
(3) Board approved mentoring activities — 3 CPC units;
(4) Developing of examination content questions – 4 CPC units; and
(5) Subject to exclusions set forth in this Regulation, teaching of, lecturing or instructing on land surveying and related subjects, subject to the following limitations:
(a) For the first time presentation, a presenter may claim credit for the activity that is equivalent to two times the number of CPC units awarded by the Board for the activity; and
(b) Unless the presentation had been substantially modified and updated for the subsequent presentations or is being presented to a different group of recipients, a presenter may claim only the same number of CPC credits as awarded by the Board to the recipients of the qualifying activity.

.08 [Determination of Credits.] Determination of Units’ Value by the Board.
[A. A licensee is eligible to earn CPC units only upon attendance and successful completion of the appropriate activity.
B. Credit for university, college, or community college-approved courses shall be based upon course credit established by the institution of higher education. An audited class is acceptable only for purposes of receiving a credit as a Category B activity.
C. The final determinations of value, appropriate category, and other matters related to the CPC units are the responsibility of the licensee, subject to review and approval by the Board.]
The final determination with regard to the value, sources, and number of credits is within the discretion of the Board.

.09 [Authorizations] Approval of Providers.
A. Responsibility for [Authorizing Providers] Providers’ Approval.
(1) – (3) (text unchanged)
(4) The Board shall assign the responsibility of reviewing and approving the providers to the CPC Standards Committee. [The] To the extent feasible and necessary, the CPC Standards Committee shall establish guidelines and procedures for approval of [authorized] providers in accordance with the objectives stated in this chapter.
[(5) To the extent feasible and necessary, the CPC Standards Committee shall submit quarterly reports to the Board containing the list of authorized providers approved by the Committee in the previous calendar quarter, together with any other information requested by the Board.]
B. Providers’ Eligibility
(1) (text unchanged)
(2) The individuals or entities [that are not considered to be preapproved providers], including, but not limited to, professional firms conducting in-house presentations, may be approved by the Board to become approved providers upon application and approval by the CPC Standards Committee.
(3) (text unchanged)
(4) The provider shall submit general information that will enable the CPC Standards Committee to evaluate the provider’s qualifications. At a minimum, the CPC Standards Committee requires the following information to be submitted with each application for approval:
(a) [The types and descriptions of proposed or existing courses intended to be offered] The sample course outline detailing the content of activity to be offered;
(b) The number of CPC units to be awarded for each course; and
(c) The identity and qualifications of the course instructors[;
(d) The explanation and sample of outcome measures; and
(e) The sample course outlines detailing the content of activity to be offered].
(5) In order to be eligible to become the approved provider, the provider must offer the activity that meets the criteria for a qualifying activity set forth in Regulation .04.
C. [Suspension and Revocation.] Review and Audit of Providers.
[(1) The Committee, with the Board’s concurrence, may suspend or revoke authorization as a provider if, in the judgment of the Board, the intent of Business Occupations and Professions Article, §15-314(f), Annotated Code of Maryland, is no longer served.
(2) An individual or organization whose provider’s privilege has been suspended or revoked by the Committee may appeal the denial to the Board for a hearing within 30 days after the CPC Standards Committee notifies the individual or organization of the denial.]
The Board may require the approved provider to document the CPC activities for audit by the Board at any time after the first presentation of the activity. Documentation shall include registration and attendance records, stated purpose, content, presentation, time and length of the activity, and participants’ evaluations.
D. [Documentation.] Suspension and Revocation.
[The Board may require approved providers to document the CPC activities for audit by the Board at any time within the 6-year period after the first presentation of the programs. Documentation shall include registration and attendance records, stated purpose, content, presentation, time and length of the activity, and participant evaluations.]
(1) The CPC Standards Committee, with the Board’s concurrence, may suspend or revoke approval of a provider if, in the judgment of the Board, the intent of Business Occupations and Professions Article, §15-314(f), Annotated Code of Maryland, is no longer served.
(2) An individual or organization whose provider’s privilege has been suspended or revoked by the CPC Standards Committee may appeal the denial to the Board for a hearing within 30 days after the CPC Standards Committee notifies the individual or organization of the denial.

E. (text unchanged)

.10 Record Keeping.
A.—B. (text unchanged)
C. Upon the Board’s request, approved providers shall electronically transmit to the Board records of attendance, completion of a qualifying activity, and any other pertinent information requested by the Board.

.12 Extenuating Circumstances/Exceptions.
A. Exemptions. Notwithstanding other requirements set forth in this chapter, a licensee who is granted an initial license may renew a license for the next full term without complying with the CPC requirements if:
(1)—(2) (text unchanged)
B. (text unchanged)

.16 Dual Licensees.
A licensee who maintains current licenses in the State of Maryland both as a professional land or property line surveyor and as a professional engineer shall comply with the CPC requirements set forth in COMAR 09.23.06 applicable to licensed professional engineers, except that a minimum of 1/3 of the units earned shall be gained from the qualifying programs on a land surveying subject as set forth in Regulations .03 and [.05] .04 of this chapter.

.17 CPC Units Earned in Other States.
[The Board will accept CPC units earned for activities completed in other jurisdictions, provided that the activities and programs are consistent with and comply with the requisite criteria set forth in this chapter and the licensee otherwise fulfills all other applicable license renewal requirements of this chapter.]
The Board will accept CPC units earned for activities completed in other jurisdictions, provided that:
A. The activities and programs are consistent and comply with the requisite criteria set forth in this chapter;
B. Licensee provides evidence of attending and completing a qualifying activity in another state, together with applicable number of CPC units earned; and
C. Licensee otherwise fulfills all other applicable license renewal requirements in the State of Maryland.