The mission of Ohio's State Board of Registration for Professional Engineers and Surveyors is to safeguard the health, safety, property and welfare of the citizens of Ohio by providing effective licensure and regulation of professional engineers, professional surveyors and engineering and surveying firms. This is accomplished pursuant to Chapter 4733 of the Revised Code by minimum education standards, examination, continuing education requirements and the investigation of complaints filed with the Board.
The Board meets several times each year to consider policy and enforcement issues.
The Board is composed of five members appointed by the governor to staggered five-year terms and has a full-time staff of eight employees who implement policies established by the Board.
The Board was created in 1933 to administer Chapter 4733 of the Ohio Revised Code [R.C.]. R.C. section 4733.07 requires the Board to adopt rules and regulations not inconsistent with Chapter 4733 and the laws of Ohio and the United States.
It is important to state that the administrative rules contained in the Ohio Administrative Code [A.C.] are not laws but have the effect of law once enacted. An administrative rule cannot change the law or create a new law, but is a clarification of laws in the Ohio Revised Code.
The procedure for adopting or amending administrative rules is defined in Ohio R.C. sections 119.01 through 119.04. In general summary of the process, the Board regularly reviews its administrative rules to ensure that they are up to date with current law and to decide if any changes are needed. In addition, the Board is required by law to review all of its rules every five years.
The Board receives input from statewide professional engineering and surveying associations — including, but not limited to; the American Council of Engineering Companies of Ohio; the County Engineers Association of Ohio; the Ohio Society of Professional Engineers; and the Professional Land Surveyors of Ohio — in the rules review process, since these statewide professional associations represent the Board's registrants: Professional Engineers and Professional Surveyors.
Once the Board decides that new rules need to be adopted or existing rules need to be amended or rescinded, a public notice is published in a newspaper of general circulation in Cincinnati, Cleveland and Columbus. The notice also appears in the Register of Ohio, an electronic notice on the web published by the Legislative Service Commission [LSC].
The public notice states the Board's intention to adopt or amend a rule, the reason for adopting or amending the rule, a summary of the rule, and the date, time and location of the hearing. The notice also states that any persons interested in the proposed or amended rule may appear and testify at the hearing or present their position in writing.
Once the Board's public hearing is completed, the Board deliberates upon the final wording of the proposed or amended rules and files the rules with the LSC, the Ohio Secretary of State and the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review [JCARR]. JCARR then holds a public hearing and votes upon the proposed or amended rules.
Subsequently, the Board files a final version of the rules with LSC, the Ohio Secretary of State and JCARR which become effective no earlier than ten days after the final filing.
As previously mentioned, the statewide engineering and surveying associations, the Board's registrants and the general public can participate in the rule-making process at several points in the process: initial Board discussion, the Board's public hearing and the JCARR public hearing; in order to ensure that all interested parties have input into the process.