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MINUTES OF A REGULAR MEETING
OKLAHOMA FUNERAL BOARD
4545 N. Lincoln Blvd, Suite 175
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
October 11, 2012
|J. Cooper||Mark Riley|
|Richard Dugger||Chris Ferguson|
|Cindy Longanacre||Grant Moak, AAG|
MEETING PLACE: Oklahoma State Capitol
2300 North Lincoln Blvd. Room 412C
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73105
President Phenix called the meeting to order at 10:00 A.M. Board members Dugger, Longanacre, Phenix, Pickard, and Temple were present. Board member Walding was absent.
President Phenix made the introduction of new Board member J,. Cooper and administered his oath of office and swearing in for a five year term.
Motion by Dugger second by Longanacre to approve the minutes form the September 13, 2012 Board meeting. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Dugger second by Temple to approve the following: Apprenticeship (original) Brian Prince, Vinita, Luginbuel FH, Vinita; Sabrina Young, OKC, Bill Merritt, Bethany; and Katelyn Magruder, Seminole, Resthaven, Shawnee. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Longanacre second by Dugger to approve the following: Apprenticeship (original) Bruce Ingram, Norman, Havenbrook FH, Norman; Kedrick Jones, OKC, Temple & Son, OKC; and Jennifer Asbury, Lawton, Whinery-Huddleston FS, Lawton. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Dugger second by Cooper to table the following Apprenticeship (original) Tyler Brown, Luther, Brown Brother’s Undertaking, Luther. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Temple second by Cooper to approve the following Apprenticeship (1st extension) Nicolas Broadnax, Bill Eisenhour FH, OKC, embalmer only (enrolled at UCO) and Pamela Cobb, Add’Vantage, Tulsa (enrolled at Amarillo) The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Dugger second by Cooper to table the following: Funeral Director/Embalmer (original) Kaysha Lindsay, Edmond (need law) The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Dugger second by Longanacre to approve the following: Establishments; Shaw Funeral Home Inc., Arnett, request change of FDIC from Charles Shaw to Willis Shoaf and Dillon & Smith FH, Sand Springs, request to change name from Dillon & Smith FH to Dillon & Smith Funeral Service. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Temple second by Longanacre to send complaint 13-11 regarding failure to discharge financial obligation to a probable cause committee to set a hearing date as soon as practical. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Longanacre second by Pickard to dismiss complaint 13-12 regarding death certificate issues. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Temple second by Cooper to send complaint 13-13 regarding unlicensed Funeral Director & double payment to a probable cause committee to set a hearing as soon as practical. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Temple second by Longanacre to send complaint 13-14 regarding failure to discharge financial obligation to a probable cause committee to set a hearing as soon as practical. The motion passed unanimously.
Mr. Dugger stated that he has recently received seven complaints regarding the same Oklahoma firm. He requested staff to poll the members of the Board and try to set a special meeting as soon as practical.
Motion by Cooper second by Longanacre to approve the following report. The motion passed unanimously.
Committee Findings #2
The funeral industry in Oklahoma has always embraced an independent mind set. We currently have some of the highest requirements for licensure in the country. This committee does find fault with this licensing process and it has had a secondary effect on a larger problem that is affecting the Funeral Homes in Oklahoma today.
This problem has been compounded by the passing of several state statutes, that require all removals of decedents, Funeral services, off site visitations and grave completion to be made by a licensed Funeral Director/Embalmer. These responsibilities had before been entrusted to a non-licensed employee often referred to as a funeral directors assistant with the Funeral Director in charge still held liable for their actions.
Oklahoma while growing in many exciting ways is still a vastly rural state. It has always been difficult to attract new Funeral Directors and Embalmers to rural areas. Current state law makes entrusting our long time employees with the responsibilities in which, they were trained not a viable option. It has become increasingly difficult for the Funeral Homes in Oklahoma to keep up with our community's needs. This is causing an ever widening gap between our states need and our industries ability to serves those needs.
The state has never found it necessary to do away with legal aids, physician's assistants or nurses aids knowing this would cripple the capability of each specific industry's ability to keep up with its service needs. Right now the funeral industry in Oklahoma is crippled.
It is this committee's finding that this is a serious and immediate concern to the funeral industry and more importantly the people of Oklahoma.
It is the committee's recommendation that the Oklahoma Funeral Board introduce a new state license for a certified Funeral Director Assistant, with no more than one assistant per licensed Funeral Director.
We would also suggest the licensing fees and requirements for the Funeral Directors Assistant be set and maintained by the Oklahoma Funeral Board.
Jeremy Sparks, Officer of OFDA reported that OFDA will be having district meetings soon. That the OFDA Board has been discussing the formation of a Funeral Board relations committee. This committee will work with the Board to help mend relationships. Also that the OFDA staff and officers just returned from the National Convention.
Discussion by the Board member and staff regarding FY13 legislation was entertained. Director Riley introduced some ideas for FY13 legislation. The Board moved to discuss this at a special meeting in the future. No votes were taken.
No legal update was reported
No New Business was reported
Deputy Director Chris Ferguson reported that the Board office is now producing a monthly newsletter. The first edition went out in August. If you did not receive the letter please request a copy at firstname.lastname@example.org . Also the Board is working with the Oklahoma Tax Commission regarding individuals not compliant in paying State taxes. If you do not receive a license renewal this year it is because we don’t have a current mailing address or you are not compliant with the Tax Commission.
Executive Director Mark Riley reported on a recent OID meeting and a consumer presentation he made. Further, he spoke about a recent district 7 meeting of the International Conference of Funeral Service Examining Boards where national model laws and mortuary school enrollment and graduation numbers were discussed and reported. Enrollment numbers are up modestly over the last few years, but statistics show that about half of those that enroll eventually graduate, and of those that graduate, about half are still in the industry 5 years later. It is reported that during the month of September, there was a $21,720.18 deficit created by receiving only $4,776.25 in revenue with $26,496.43 in expenses. For the year, the deficit currently stands at $63,983.09.
After discussion my Grant Moak AAG and the Board a motion by Dugger second by Longanacre to give the parties a thirty day continuance in the matter of a Emergency Order issued on August 14, 2012 Regarding the Crown Hill Funeral Home, Tulsa and Betty McConnell, Funeral Director in Charge for alleged Violations of 396.12 (B), 396.12c (17), 235:10-7-2 (17), and 235:10-15-3. The motion passed unanimously.
In the matter of the Administrative consent order concerning Complaints 11-25 & 12-01, Board v. Nichols Funeral Home, Fairview , a formerly licensed Funeral Service Establishment, now terminated, and Jeremy Nichols a formerly licensed Funeral Director, now suspended, the former Funeral Director In Charge, for alleged Violations of 59O.S. § 396.12c. (13) and OAC 235:10-7-2 (14). A motion by Longanacre second by Dugger to accept a consent order from Respondents Attorney Steven Money that Jeremy Nichols will surrender his Funeral Director license in lieu of said penalty and shall be forever barred from obtaining a reissuance of said license. The motion passed unanimously. Mr. Phenix and Mr. Temple were recused from the consent order vote.
In the matter of the Administrative Hearing regarding Complaint 12-23, Board v. Green Hill Funeral Home, Inc., Sapulpa, a licensed Funeral Service Establishment, Green Hill Funeral Home of Owasso, Inc. Owasso, a licensed Funeral Service Establishment, and Tom Dugan, the Funeral Director In Charge for alleged Violations of 59 O.S. §§ 396.6(A), 396.12(A),(B), 396.12c (8), (17); OAC 235:10-7-2(17);10-5-3 (1),(2),(4). Green Hill Funeral Homes and Tom Dugan were represented by John Young. The Funeral Board was represented by Grant Moak, AAG. Geoff Long AAG was advisor to the Board. Southwest Court Reporting recorded the hearing. Richard Dugger was the hearing officer and Mark Temple was recused from the matter. Witness for the case were: Mark Riley, Jessica Franklin, William Welsh, Jim Manley, and Tom Dugan.
John Young first submitted a fax copy of a subpoena that was directed to Board staff. Mr. Dugger overruled to admit this document into the hearing.
After extensive testimony, and cross examination by both parties that included introducing 10 exhibits by the Board, and 29 exhibits introduced by the respondents. Mr. Phenix left during this timeframe and did not return. A motion by Pickard second by Cooper to enter into executive session pursuant to 25 O.S. Supp 1998, Subsection 307 (B) (8) to engage in deliberations or rendering a final Or intermediate decision in an individual proceeding pursuant to Article II of the Administrative Procedures Act regarding Green Hill Funeral Home, Inc., Sapulpa, a licensed Funeral Service Establishment, Green Hill Funeral Home of Owasso, Inc. Owasso, a licensed Funeral Service Establishment, and Tom Dugan, the Funeral Director In Charge. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Longanacre second by Pickard to reconvene the regular meeting. During executive session only this case was discussed and no votes were taken. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Dugger second by Longanacre to find the State proved the case by clear and convincing evidence that Green Hill Funeral Home, Inc., Sapulpa, a licensed Funeral Service Establishment, Green Hill Funeral Home of Owasso, Inc. Owasso, a licensed Funeral Service Establishment, and Tom Dugan, the Funeral Director In Charge violated 59 O.S. §§ 396.6(A), 396.12(A),(B), 396.12c (8), (17); OAC 235:10-7-2(17);10-5-3 (1),(2),(4) and that an administrative penalty of $5,000 for each Funeral Establishment and $10,000 for the Funeral Director In Charge be assessed. Further, that one half of each penalty shall be waived if respondent completes a one year probation monitored by the Board. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Dugger second by Longanacre to table discussion and possible action on FY13 legislation until a future special meeting. The motion passed unanimously.
Motion by Pickard second by Longanacre to adjourn the meeting at 3:30 P.M. The motion passed unanimously.