HB 237

Sponsor
Session
Regular Session 2018
Title
Funeral Service, Board of, specific race requirements for memberships removed, Secs. 34-13-20, 34-13-23 am'd.
Description

Under existing federal case law, a statutory law that specifies the race of the members of an appointed board is a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the U. S. Constitution

This bill would remove specific race requirements relating to the membership of the Alabama Board of Funeral Service

To amend Sections 34-13-20 and 34-13-23, Code of Alabama 1975, as amended by Act 2017-433, 2017 Regular Session, relating to the Alabama Board of Funeral Service; to remove specific race requirements for membership on the board.

Subjects
Funeral Service, Board of
View Original PDF: HB 237 - Introduced - PDF

Under existing federal case law, a statutory law that specifies the race of the members of an appointed board is a violation of the Equal Protection Clause of the U. S. Constitution

This bill would remove specific race requirements relating to the membership of the Alabama Board of Funeral Service

To amend Sections 34-13-20 and 34-13-23, Code of Alabama 1975, as amended by Act 2017-433, 2017 Regular Session, relating to the Alabama Board of Funeral Service; to remove specific race requirements for membership on the board.

Section 1

Sections 34-13-20 and 34-13-23 of the Code of Alabama 1975, as amended by Act 2017-433, 2017 Regular Session, are amended to read as follows:

§34-13-20.

(a) There is established the Alabama Board of Funeral Service, consisting of nine members, each of whom shall be citizens of the United States and residents of the State of Alabama.

(b) The appointing authorities shall coordinate their appointments to assure board membership is inclusive and reflects the racial, gender, geographic, urban/rural, and economic diversity of the state. At no time may more than five members of the entire membership of the board be of the same race or both consumer members be of the same race.

(c) Commencing on January 1, 2019, as the terms of the members serving on the board on August 1, 2017, expire, the membership of the board shall be reconstituted to consist of seven professional members and two consumer members.

(1) Each professional member of the board shall be a citizen of the United States, a resident of Alabama, and licensed and in good standing with the board as an embalmer or funeral director at the time of appointment and during the entire term of office. Professional members of the board shall be appointed by the Governor pursuant to subsection (e).

a. Four of the professional members of the board shall hold a current license from the board to practice embalming in the state, shall have been actively practicing embalming in the state for the last 10 consecutive years immediately preceding appointment, and shall be engaged in the practice of embalming at the time of appointment to the board.

b. Three of the professional members of the board shall hold a current license from the board to practice funeral directing in the state, shall have been actively engaged in funeral directing in the state for the last 10 consecutive years immediately preceding appointment, and shall be the operator of a funeral establishment in this state at the time of appointment to the board.

(2) Each consumer member of the board shall represent the public in general and shall have been a citizen of the United States and a resident of Alabama for the last 10 consecutive years immediately preceding appointment and during the entire term of office. A consumer member of the board may not have held, nor currently hold, a license or certification issued by the board, be employed at any time by, or professionally or financially associated with, the holder of a license or certificate issued by the board, or be related within the third degree of consanguinity or affinity to the holder of a license or certificate issued by the board. One consumer member of the board shall be appointed by the Lieutenant Governor and one consumer member shall be appointed by the Speaker of the House of Representatives pursuant to a procedure adopted by rule of the board.

(d) Commencing in October of 2018, and each October thereafter of a year where at least one professional member term on the board has expired, or is vacant for any reason, all licensed funeral directors and licensed embalmers shall meet in Montgomery, at a time and place fixed by the board, for the purpose of nominating and submitting the names of three licensed persons for each position on the board to the Governor. Not more than two nominees shall be members of the same race. The Governor shall promptly appoint one of the three persons so nominated to serve as a professional member of the board.

(e)(1) Professional and consumer members of the board shall serve staggered terms of four years each to provide continuity of service on the board. If an appointment is not made before the expiration of a term, the board member then serving may continue to serve until a successor has been appointed. A board member may not serve more than two full consecutive terms on the board.

(2) A board member who is appointed to fill a vacancy which occurs before the expiration of the term of the vacating member shall serve the remaining portion of the term to which the former member was appointed. If a member is appointed to fill an unexpired term of less than two years, the time may not be counted toward the maximum eight years of service.

(3) Not more than one professional member of the board may reside in the same district as created by Section 34-13-21.

(4) At each meeting where nominations are made for the professional members of the board, only one licensed funeral director or licensed embalmer employed by the same funeral establishment may vote.

(f)(1) In accordance with applicable law, in addition to a board member resigning from the board in writing, a board member may be removed from the board for any of the following grounds:

a. The refusal or inability to perform board duties in an efficient, responsible, or professional manner.

b. The misuse of his or her position on the board to obtain financial gain or seek personal advantage for himself, herself, or another person.

c. A final adjudication or determination of guilt by any lawful authority of the board member or sanction of the board member for the violation of any law the board determines is substantially related to any practice governed by this chapter.

d. The revocation or suspension of the license of a professional member of the board.

(2) Any board member who fails to qualify after appointment shall automatically become ineligible to serve as a member of the board and a new member, properly qualified, shall be appointed in the same manner as the original appointment and shall serve the remainder of the term of the vacating board member.

(3) If a consumer board member fails to attend two or more meetings within a year, without a valid excuse as determined by the board, he or she shall be removed from the board. A new consumer board member shall be appointed in the same manner as the original appointment and shall serve the remainder of the term.

§34-13-23.

(a)(1) The board appointed under this chapter and each successor thereto is authorized to select from its own membership a chair and to adopt and promulgate such rules and regulations for the transaction of its business and for the betterment and promotion of the standards of service and practice to be followed in the funeral service profession in the State of Alabama as the board may deem expedient and consistent with the laws of this state and for the public good.

(2) The chair shall preside at all meetings of the board unless otherwise ordered, and he or she shall exercise and perform all duties and functions incident to the office of chair.

(3) The board may select also from its own membership a vice chair, a secretary, and a treasurer. No two offices shall be held by the same person. The chair and vice chair may not be of the same race.

(b) The treasurer shall give bond to the State of Alabama in the sum of ten thousand dollars ($10,000), and any premium payable for the bond shall be paid from the funds of the board. The bond shall be deposited with the Treasurer of the State of Alabama.

(c) Board members shall be reimbursed for their necessary traveling expenses and the necessary expenses incident to their attendance upon the business of the board, and, in addition thereto, they shall receive the sum of fifty dollars ($50) per diem for every day not to exceed 20 days per year actually spent by the member upon the business of the board. The board may employ an executive director and associate executive director who shall each receive and be paid an annual salary to be fixed by the board, but not to exceed the salary level established and paid to cabinet officers in the state government. The salary shall be paid on a semimonthly basis. In addition, the executive director and associate executive director shall receive his or her necessary traveling and other incidental expenses as are incurred in the performance of duties, and all expenses, per diem, and compensation shall be paid out of the receipts of the board. At no time shall the operation of the board be an expense to the state, and at no time shall expenses of the board exceed the receipts of the board.

(d) The executive director of the board shall have complete supervision and be held responsible for the direction of the office of the board, shall have supervision over field inspection and enforcement of this chapter, and shall be responsible and answerable to the board. The associate executive director shall assist the executive director and perform such other duties as may be assigned to him or her by the board. The executive director and associate executive director shall not be of the same race.

(e) The executive director shall keep a record in which shall be registered the name and business address of every person to whom licenses have been granted in accordance with this chapter, the number and date of the license and the date of each renewal. Upon request to do so, the executive director shall supply each person licensed for the practice of embalming and funeral directing with a list of all persons and establishments holding a license under this chapter, then in force, giving the names of the persons, their business addresses, and the numbers of their licenses.

(f) It shall be the duty of the executive director to prepare under the direction of the board and cause to be printed all forms required by this chapter to be prescribed by the board. All notices required to be mailed by this chapter shall be directed to the last known post office address of the party to whom the notice is sent.

(g) The executive director shall serve at the pleasure of the board and shall perform duties as may be necessary for the proper functioning of the board as the board may determine or as may be prescribed in this chapter. During the employment of the executive director he or she may not be employed by any funeral establishment.

(h) All fees and fines received under this chapter shall be paid into a special fund in the State Treasury to be known as the Alabama State Funeral Directors and Embalmers Fund, which is hereby created, for the necessary and proper expenses of the board, and for a reasonable reserve for future use by the board. All moneys in the fund are hereby appropriated, as a continuing appropriation, to the board to be used for carrying out this chapter.

(i) Each member of the board, the executive director, the associate executive director, designated employees, and independent contractors of the board appropriately identified are authorized at any given time on complaint or for inspection purposes to enter the office, premises, establishment, or place of business of any funeral service licensee in the State of Alabama or any office, premises, establishment, or place where the practice of funeral service is carried on, or where the practice is advertised as being carried on, for the purpose of inspecting the office, premises, records, or establishment and for the purpose of inspecting the license and registration of any funeral service licensee and apprentice trainee operating therein.

(j) All members of the board or designated employees of the board may serve and execute any process issued by any court under this chapter and to serve and execute any papers or process issued by the board or any officer or member thereof under this chapter.

(k) The board may employ clerical assistants and employees or other help as necessary to carry out this chapter, and the terms and conditions of employment shall be determined by the board. The board may establish and equip an office from which this chapter may be carried out."

Section 2

This act shall become effective on the first day of the third month following its passage and approval by the Governor, or its otherwise becoming law.

No articles found.
Action Date Chamber Action
March 22, 2018HDelivered to Governor at 10:17 a.m. on March 22, 2018.
March 22, 2018HAssigned Act No. 2018-451.
March 22, 2018HClerk of the House Certification
March 22, 2018SSignature Requested
March 21, 2018HEnrolled
March 21, 2018HPassed Second House
March 21, 2018SMotion to Read a Third Time and Pass adopted Roll Call 950
March 21, 2018SThird Reading Passed
February 27, 2018SRead for the second time and placed on the calendar
February 22, 2018SRead for the first time and referred to the Senate committee on Governmental Affairs
February 20, 2018HMotion to Read a Third Time and Pass adopted Roll Call 416
February 20, 2018HThird Reading Passed
February 8, 2018HRead for the second time and placed on the calendar
January 16, 2018HRead for the first time and referred to the House of Representatives committee on Boards, Agencies and Commissions
2018-03-21
Chamber: Senate
Result: Passed
2018-02-20
Chamber: House
Result: Passed