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Legislative Audit Commission


February 6, 1999

The meeting of the Legislative Audit Commission was called to order by Senator Deanna Wiener on Wednesday, February 6, 1999 at 2:10 p.m. in Room 316, State Capitol.

Members Present:

Representative Lynda Boudreau    Senator Sheila Kiscaden
Representative Mindy Greiling Senator David Knutson
Representative Philip Krinkie Senator Deanna Wiener
Representative Peggy Leppik
Representative Dan McElroy
Representative Wes Skoglund

Members Not Present:

Representative Phil Carruthers Senator William Belanger, Jr.
Representative Chris Gerlach Senator Dave Johnson
Representative Kris Hasskamp Senator Keith Langseth
Representative Mary Jo McGuire    Senator James Metzen
Senator Thomas Neuville
Senator Ember Reichgott Junge
Senator Claire Robling

Senator Wiener indicated the purpose of the meeting was to release and discuss the program evaluation report on the occupational regulation and recognized Roger Brooks, Deputy Legislative Auditor. Mr. Brooks reviewed the reasons why this topic had been selected for study by the commission and introduced Elliot Long, project manager, and other evaluation specialists who had worked on the study, Laura Martell and Craig Helmstetter.

Mr. Long reviewed the questions addressed in the study and why they were examined. He also gave an overview of the methods used in conducting the study, and the findings, conclusions, and recommendations contained in the report. He and project members answered questions from members.

Several members raised questions concerning the annual reports required from licensing boards. Members also asked for advice on how the Legislature could conduct better “sunrise studies” to ensure that proposals for new or expanded regulation meet the policy criteria set forth in statute. Senator Wiener recognized James Nobles, Legislative Auditor. Mr. Nobles suggested that this could perhaps be done by staff in either House or Senate Research or a joint legislative commission, similar to the Pension Commission, which reviews pension bills in an effort to maintain consistent and sound pension policy.

There was some discussion about several occupations, including unlicensed mental health professionals. Representative Greiling expressed concern over what organization would be responsible for investigating complaints since there are no statutory requirements for practicing in that field.

The meeting adjourned at 3:05 PM.

Senator Deanna Wiener, Chair

Jean Barnhill, Acting Recording Secretary

Office of the Legislative Auditor ♦ Room 140, 658 Cedar St., St. Paul, MN 55155