PROFESSIONAL GOVERANCE ACT
March 5th, 2019
BCIA continues to be involved with the Professional Reliance Review and the resulting, still-to-be enacted, Professional Governance Act (S.B.C. 2018 Ch.47). Council and staff continue to work with the Government and the other Regulators to influence a design and implementation plan for this legislation that will meet the legislative intent in a reasonable and realistic manner.
On October 29, 2018, via their Engage BC website, the government requested feedback on its Regulations Intentions Paper Consequent to the Professional Governance Act. In addition to BCIA’s responses to each specific inquiry, we also submitted a written response. A copy of that submission is provided with this letter to all Registrants in good standing of BCIA. It is our understanding that a “What We Heard” document will be compiled by the Government and released publicly in late spring.
In the Intentions Paper, government was looking for feedback on three specific areas: types of practice rights for professions, regulation of firms and competency and conflict of interest declarations. BCIA’s position on each of these areas is detailed in the written submission and summarized as follows:
- BCIA supports the Overlapping Scope of Practice Model as it formalizes and enhances existing practices. BCIA considers the Exclusive Practice Rights model too restrictive and the Shared Scope of Practice model too permissive.
- BCIA fully supports regulation of firms and notes that the determination and enactment of practice rights should be a completed prior to the regulation of firms initiative.
- BCIA supports the concept of competency and conflict of interest declarations but has significant concerns about the administrative impact of these items. BCIA proposes enhancements to our current declarations system to allow for annual acknowledgement of practising within the code of ethics.
In the “Response to the Regulations Intentions Paper Consequent to the Professional Governance Act”, BCIA provided comments on topics in addition to those discussed in the Intentions Paper, including:
- Information about the profession of Agrology
- Classification of Registrants: BCIA is proposing the additional class of Agrologist Technologist.
At this time, many details of the proposed approaches as well as precise information respecting the timeline by which the numerous provisions of the Act will be enacted are not available. We believe that the new Office of Professional Governance will be operational by early summer but substantive developments such as the enactment of the Right to Practice may not be achieved until the mid-2020s. Selected aspects of the Act, not covered in the Intentions Paper, such as Council composition, election procedures and the appointment of lay Councillors and committee members should occur in this calendar year.
Council will keep you apprised of all developments but if you have questions or comments please always feel free to contact your respective Councillor or the BCIA office.
Oana Enick, P.Ag.