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A00963 Text:

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2013-2014 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                     January 9, 2013
        Introduced  by  M.  of A. KELLNER, JAFFEE, BROOK-KRASNY, MARKEY, WEISEN-
          BERG, McDONOUGH -- read once and referred to the Committee  on  Higher
        AN ACT to amend the education law, in relation to requiring licensing of
          rehabilitation counselors

          The  People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section 1. The education law is amended by adding a new article 152 to
     2  read as follows:
     3                                 ARTICLE 152
     4                          REHABILITATION COUNSELING
     5  Section 7550. Introduction.
     6          7551. Definition of the practice of "rehabilitation counseling".
     7          7552. Practice of  rehabilitation  counseling  and  use  of  the
     8                  titles "rehabilitation counselor" and "licensed rehabil-
     9                  itation counselor".
    10          7553. State board for rehabilitation counseling.
    11          7554. Requirements for a professional license.
    12          7555. Limited permits.

    13          7556. Exempt persons.
    14          7557. Special provisions.
    15          7558. Mandatory continuing education.
    16          7559. Separability.
    17    §  7550. Introduction. This article applies to the profession of reha-
    18  bilitation  counseling.  The  general  provisions  for  all  professions
    19  contained  in  article  one  hundred thirty of this title shall apply to
    20  this article.
    21    § 7551. Definition of the practice of "rehabilitation counseling". The
    22  practice of the profession of rehabilitation counseling is defined as  a
    23  systematic process which assists persons with physical, mental, develop-
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets

                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 963                              2
     1  mental, cognitive, and emotional disabilities to achieve their personal,
     2  career,  and  independent  living  goals  in the most integrated setting
     3  possible through the application of the counseling  process.  The  coun-
     4  seling  process  involves  communication,  goal  setting, and beneficial
     5  growth  or  change  through  self-advocacy,  psychological,  vocational,
     6  social, and behavioral interventions. The specific techniques and modal-
     7  ities   utilized  within  this  rehabilitation  counseling  process  may
     8  include, but are not limited to:

     9    1. assessment and appraisal;
    10    2. diagnosis and treatment planning;
    11    3. career (vocational) counseling;
    12    4. individual and group counseling treatment interventions focused  on
    13  facilitating adjustments to the medical and psychosocial impact of disa-
    14  bility;
    15    5. case management, referral, and service coordination;
    16    6. program evaluation and research;
    17    7.  interventions to remove environmental, employment, and attitudinal
    18  barriers;
    19    8.  consultation  services  among  multiple  parties  and   regulatory
    20  systems;
    21    9.  job  analysis,  job development, and placement services, including
    22  assistance with employment and job accommodations;

    23    10. the provision of consultation about and access  to  rehabilitation
    24  technology.
    25    §  7552.  Practice  of rehabilitation counseling and use of the titles
    26  "rehabilitation counselor" and "licensed rehabilitation counselor". Only
    27  a person licensed  or exempt under this article shall practice rehabili-
    28  tation counseling or use the title "rehabilitation counselor".   Only  a
    29  person  licensed  under this article shall use the title "licensed reha-
    30  bilitation counselor" or any other designation tending to imply that the
    31  person is licensed to practice rehabilitation counseling.
    32    § 7553. State board for rehabilitation counseling. 1.  A  state  board
    33  for rehabilitation counseling shall be appointed by the board of regents

    34  on  recommendation  of the commissioner for the purpose of assisting the
    35  board of regents and the department on matters of  licensing  and  regu-
    36  lation.    The  board shall be composed of at least three rehabilitation
    37  counselors licensed pursuant to this article and  at  least  one  public
    38  representative  who does not hold interests in the organization, financ-
    39  ing, or delivery of rehabilitation counseling services. Members  of  the
    40  first  board  need  not  be  licensed  prior to their appointment to the
    41  board. An executive secretary to the board shall  be  appointed  by  the
    42  board of regents on recommendation of the commissioner.
    43    2.  The  terms  of  office  of  the members of the board shall be five

    44  years; provided, however, that of the members first appointed, one shall
    45  be appointed for three years, one shall be appointed for four years, and
    46  two shall be appointed for five years. Any vacancy on the board shall be
    47  filled by appointment for the remainder of such member's term in accord-
    48  ance with the provisions of this section.
    49    3. The members of the board shall receive no  compensation  for  their
    50  services  but each member shall be entitled to receive his or her actual
    51  and necessary expenses incurred in the performance of his or her duties.
    52    § 7554. Requirements for a professional  license.  To  qualify  for  a
    53  license  as  a  "licensed  rehabilitation counselor", an applicant shall
    54  fulfill the following requirements:

    55    1. Application: file an application with the department;

        A. 963                              3
     1    2. Examination: pass the examination of the  Commission  on  Rehabili-
     2  tation  Counseling  Certification (CRCC); be certified by that body as a
     3  Certified Rehabilitation Counselor (CRC);
     4    3. Age: be at least twenty-one years of age;
     5    4.  Character: be of good moral character as determined by the depart-
     6  ment; and
     7    5. Fees: pay a fee of two hundred fifty dollars to the department  for
     8  admission  to  licensure  and  for  an initial license; and a fee of one
     9  hundred seventy dollars for each triennial registration period.
    10    § 7555. Limited permits. The  following  requirements  for  a  limited

    11  permit shall apply to the profession licensed pursuant to this article:
    12    1.  The  department  may  issue a limited permit to an applicant whose
    13  qualifications have been approved for admission to the CRCC  examination
    14  in accordance with regulations promulgated therefor.
    15    2.  Limited  permits  shall be for one year and may be renewed, at the
    16  discretion of the department, for one additional year.
    17    3. The fee for each limited permit and for each renewal thereof  shall
    18  be seventy dollars.
    19    §  7556.  Exempt  persons. 1.   This article shall not be construed to
    20  affect or prevent qualified physicians, nurses, physical or occupational
    21  therapists, psychologists, counselors, creative arts therapists, psycho-

    22  analysts, social workers or members of the clergy  from  performing  the
    23  work  of  a  rehabilitation  counselor where incident to the practice of
    24  their professions, provided they do  not  hold  themselves  out  to  the
    25  public  by  any title as being engaged in the practice of rehabilitation
    26  counseling.
    27    2. This article shall not be construed to affect or prevent a rehabil-
    28  itation counseling student from engaging in clinical practice under  the
    29  supervision  of a licensed or certified rehabilitation counselor as part
    30  of a program conducted in an approved agency affiliated with an  accred-
    31  ited  school  of  rehabilitation  counseling  which  is  approved by the
    32  department.

    33    § 7557. Special provisions. 1.   Any nonexempt person  practicing  the
    34  profession  to  be  licensed  pursuant to this article shall apply for a
    35  license for practice of such profession within one year of the effective
    36  date of this article.  If such person does not meet the requirements for
    37  a license established within this article, the department shall  license
    38  without  examination  if  the applicant submits evidence satisfactory to
    39  the department of having been engaged in the practice of such profession
    40  for at least five of  the  immediately  preceding  eight  years.    Such
    41  exemption  shall  be in effect for only one year following the effective
    42  date of this article.
    43    2. The commissioner shall approve all fees authorized pursuant to this

    44  article. Such fees shall be  set  in  amounts  sufficient  to  meet  the
    45  expenses of administering the provisions of this article.
    46    3. The department shall promulgate any rules and regulations necessary
    47  to establish professional standards of rehabilitation counselors and any
    48  other  rules  and  regulations necessary to administer the provisions of
    49  this article.
    50    § 7558. Mandatory continuing education.  1.  (a)  Each  rehabilitation
    51  counselor  licensed pursuant to this article required to register trien-
    52  nially with the department to practice in the state  shall  comply  with
    53  the  provisions  of  the  mandatory  continuing  education  requirements
    54  prescribed in subdivision two of this section except  as  set  forth  in

    55  paragraphs  (b) and (c) of this subdivision. Such rehabilitation counse-
    56  lors  who do not satisfy the mandatory continuing education requirements

        A. 963                              4
     1  shall not practice until they have met such requirements, they have paid
     2  all applicable fees, and they have been issued a registration or  condi-
     3  tional registration certificate.
     4    (b)  Rehabilitation  counselors  shall  be  exempt  from the mandatory
     5  continuing education requirement for the triennial  registration  period
     6  during  which  they are first licensed. In accordance with the intent of
     7  this section, adjustment to the mandatory continuing education  require-
     8  ment may be granted by the department for reasons of health certified by

     9  an  appropriate  health care professional, for extended active duty with
    10  the armed forces of the United States, or for other good  cause accepta-
    11  ble to the department which may prevent compliance.
    12    (c) A licensed rehabilitation counselor not engaged  in  practice,  as
    13  determined by the department, shall be exempt from the mandatory contin-
    14  uing  education  requirement  upon  the  filing  of a statement with the
    15  department declaring such  status. Any licensee who returns to the prac-
    16  tice of rehabilitation counselor during the triennial registration peri-
    17  od shall notify the department prior to reentering  the  profession  and
    18  shall  meet such mandatory education requirements as shall be prescribed
    19  by regulations of the commissioner.

    20    2. During each triennial registration period an applicant  for  regis-
    21  tration    shall  complete  a minimum of twenty-four hours of acceptable
    22  continuing education, a maximum of twelve hours of which may be self-in-
    23  structional course work acceptable to the department. Any rehabilitation
    24  counselor whose first registration date following the effective date  of
    25  this section occurs less than three years from  such effective date, but
    26  on or after January first, two thousand sixteen, shall complete continu-
    27  ing  education  hours  on  a  prorated basis at the rate of one hour per
    28  month for the period beginning January first, two thousand sixteen up to
    29  the first registration date thereafter. A licensee who has not satisfied

    30  the mandatory continuing education requirements shall not  be  issued  a
    31  triennial registration certificate by the department and shall not prac-
    32  tice  unless and until a conditional registration certificate is issued,
    33  as provided for in subdivision three of this section, or until he or she
    34  has otherwise met the requirements of this section.
    35    3. The department, in its discretion, may issue a  conditional  regis-
    36  tration  to  a  licensee  who  fails  to  meet  the continuing education
    37  requirements established in subdivision two  of  this  section  but  who
    38  agrees  to  make up any deficiencies and  complete any additional educa-
    39  tion which the department may require. The fee for  such  a  conditional

    40  registration  shall  be the same as, and in addition to, the fee for the
    41  triennial registration. The duration of  such  conditional  registration
    42  shall be determined by the department but shall not exceed one year. Any
    43  licensee  who  is  notified of the denial of registration for failure to
    44  submit  evidence,  satisfactory  to     the  department,   of   required
    45  continuing_education and who practices rehabilitation counseling without
    46  such  registration, may be subject to disciplinary proceedings  pursuant
    47  to section sixty-five hundred ten of this title.
    48    4. As used in subdivision two of this section, "acceptable  continuing
    49  education"  shall  mean  courses  of learning and educational activities

    50  which contribute to professional practice in  rehabilitation  counseling
    51  and  which  meet  the standards prescribed by regulations of the commis-
    52  sioner. The department may, in  its discretion and as needed to contrib-
    53  ute to the health and welfare of the public, require the  completion  of
    54  continuing education courses in specific subjects.

        A. 963                              5
     1    5.  Rehabilitation counselors shall maintain adequate documentation of
     2  completion of acceptable continuing education and educational activities
     3  and shall provide such documentation at the request of the department.
     4    6. The mandatory continuing education fee shall be forty-five dollars,

     5  shall  be payable on or before the first day of each triennial registra-
     6  tion period, and shall be paid in addition to the triennial registration
     7  fee required by section seventy-five hundred fifty-four of this article.
     8    7. The department shall be required to mail to all licensed  rehabili-
     9  tation counselors, prior to the first day of each triennial registration
    10  period,  information   setting forth the requirements for such triennial
    11  registration.
    12    § 7559. Separability. If any section of this article, or part thereof,
    13  shall be adjudged by any court of competent jurisdiction to be  invalid,
    14  such  judgment  shall  not affect, impair or invalidate the remainder of
    15  any other section or part thereof.

    16    § 2. This act shall take effect on the five  hundred  forty-fifth  day
    17  after  it shall have become a law; provided, however, that any rules and
    18  regulations necessary to implement the provisions of  this  act  on  its
    19  effective  date  are  authorized and directed to be promulgated, amended
    20  and repealed on or before such date.
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