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AB-1529 Cross-connection or backflow prevention device inspectors: certification.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 04/19/2017 09:00 PM
AB1529:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  April 19, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1529


Introduced by Assembly Member Thurmond

February 17, 2017


An act to add Chapter 9.6 (commencing with Section 7220) to Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code, relating to professions and vocations. Section 116812 to the Health and Safety Code, relating to drinking water.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1529, as amended, Thurmond. Cross-connection or backflow prevention device inspectors: certification.
Existing law, the California Safe Drinking Water Act, requires the State Water Resources Control Board to administer provisions relating to the regulation of drinking water to protect public health, including, but not limited to, conducting research, studies, and demonstration projects relating to the provision of a dependable, safe supply of drinking water, enforcing the federal Safe Drinking Water Act, adopting regulations, and conducting studies and investigations to assess the quality of private domestic water wells.
Existing law requires any person who owns a public water system to ensure that the system does certain things, including, but not limited to, that it will not be subject to backflow under normal operating conditions. Existing law, to ensure that testing and maintenance of backflow prevention devices are performed by persons qualified to do testing and maintenance, authorizes local health officers to maintain programs for certification of backflow prevention device testers and requires the certification program to be consistent with backflow protection regulations adopted by the state board. A violation of these provisions, or of an order by a local health officer pursuant to these provisions, is a misdemeanor.
This bill would require valid and current certifications for cross-connection inspection and testing or backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance that were determined by the State Department of Public Health to demonstrate competency before January 1, 2016, to be approved California-specific certifications either until the state board promulgates regulations for cross-connection inspection and testing and backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance, or until January 1, 2020, whichever comes first. The bill would, under certain conditions, prohibit a water supplier from refusing to recognize statewide certifications that meet standards set by regulations of the state board.

Existing law provides for the licensing and certification of various professions by state boards and commissions. Existing law establishes the California Building Standards Commission and sets forth its powers and duties, including, but not limited to, the duty to codify all building standards adopted by state agencies into one California Building Standards Code.

This bill would require a person who performs maintenance or testing of a cross-connection or backflow prevention device to be certified, as specified. The bill would require the California Building Standards Commission to publish a list of approved statewide certification providers on or before January 1, 2019. The bill would provide exceptions for local certification programs and for acceptance of previously issued certifications in certain circumstances.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 116812 is added to the Health and Safety Code, to read:

116812.
 (a) Valid and current certifications for cross-connection inspection and testing or backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance that were determined by the State Department of Public Health to demonstrate competency in cross-connection inspection and testing or backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance before January 1, 2016, shall be approved California-specific certifications either until the State Water Resources Control Board promulgates regulations for cross-connection inspection and testing and backflow prevention device inspection, testing, and maintenance, or until January 1, 2020, whichever comes first.
(b) If contractors, building operators, building owners, or property owners are required to employ, contract with, or subcontract with a certified backflow prevention device tester or a certified cross-connection control specialist to receive water service, the water supplier shall not refuse to recognize statewide certifications that meet standards set by regulations of the State Water Resources Control Board. Nothing in this section prohibits an agency or regulated public utility from rejecting the adequacy of a specific cross-connection or backflow prevention device inspection, test, or maintenance activity for reasons other than the identity of the certification provider.

SECTION 1.Chapter 9.6 (commencing with Section 7220) is added to Division 3 of the Business and Professions Code, to read:
9.6.Cross-Connection or Backflow Prevention Device Inspectors
7220.

(a)Cross-connection or backflow prevention device testing or maintenance shall be performed by a person who has received a California-specific certification that demonstrates competency in that testing or maintenance.

(b)The California Building Standards Commission, in consultation with other appropriate agencies, shall publish a list of approved statewide certification providers on or before January 1, 2019.

(c)This section shall not apply where a local health officer maintains a local certification program.

(d)Certifications that were determined by the State Department of Public Health to demonstrate competency in cross-connection or backflow prevention device testing prior to January 1, 2016, shall be approved statewide certifications unless approval is rescinded by the California Building Standards Commission.