Florida Senate - 2019                                     SB 616
       By Senator Perry
       8-00269B-19                                            2019616__
    1                        A bill to be entitled                      
    2         An act relating to engineering; amending s. 471.008,
    3         F.S.; authorizing the Board of Professional Engineers
    4         to establish standards of practice and responsibility
    5         rules for the profession of engineering; amending s.
    6         471.013, F.S.; revising the prerequisites for a person
    7         to take an examination that determines whether she or
    8         he is qualified to practice in this state as an
    9         engineer; deleting an obsolete provision; amending s.
   10         471.015, F.S.; revising licensure certification
   11         requirements to include active engineering experience
   12         and a minimum age; revising requirements for licensure
   13         by endorsement by the board; providing that the time
   14         period in which a licensure application must be
   15         granted or denied is tolled if an applicant is
   16         required to make a personal appearance before the
   17         board; requiring the board to deny a license if such
   18         an applicant fails to appear before the board within a
   19         specified timeframe; requiring the board to establish
   20         certain training and education requirements for
   21         certain qualified representatives; amending s.
   22         471.025, F.S.; requiring a successor engineer to be
   23         able to independently re-create certain work when
   24         seeking to reuse certain documents; specifying that a
   25         successor engineer assumes full professional and legal
   26         responsibility by signing or affixing his or her seal
   27         to assumed documents; releasing the engineer who
   28         previously sealed the documents from any professional
   29         responsibility or civil liability for her or his work
   30         that is assumed by a successor engineer; defining the
   31         term “successor engineer”; amending s. 553.79, F.S.;
   32         requiring that structural inspections on a threshold
   33         building be performed during new construction or
   34         during certain repair or restoration projects;
   35         providing an effective date.
   37  Be It Enacted by the Legislature of the State of Florida:
   39         Section 1. Section 471.008, Florida Statutes, is amended to
   40  read:
   41         471.008 Rulemaking authority.—The board has authority to
   42  adopt rules pursuant to ss. 120.536(1) and 120.54 to:
   43         (1) Implement provisions of this chapter or chapter 455
   44  which confer conferring duties upon it.
   45         (2) Establish minimum standards of practice for the
   46  profession of engineering.
   47         (3)Establish responsibility rules for the profession of
   48  engineering.
   49         Section 2. Paragraph (a) of subsection (1) of section
   50  471.013, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
   51         471.013 Examinations; prerequisites.—
   52         (1)(a) A person shall be entitled to take an examination
   53  for the purpose of determining whether she or he is qualified to
   54  practice in this state as an engineer if the person is of good
   55  moral character and:
   56         1. Is a graduate from an approved engineering science
   57  curriculum of 4 years or more in a school, college, or
   58  university which has been approved by the board; or and has a
   59  record of 4 years of active engineering experience of a
   60  character indicating competence to be in responsible charge of
   61  engineering;
   62         2. Is a graduate of an approved engineering technology
   63  curriculum of 4 years or more in a school, college, or
   64  university within the State University System, having been
   65  enrolled or having graduated prior to July 1, 1979, and has a
   66  record of 4 years of active engineering experience of a
   67  character indicating competence to be in responsible charge of
   68  engineering; or
   69         3. Has, in lieu of such education and experience
   70  requirements, 10 years or more of active engineering work of a
   71  character indicating that the applicant is competent to be
   72  placed in responsible charge of engineering. However, this
   73  subparagraph does not apply unless such person notifies the
   74  department before July 1, 1984, that she or he was engaged in
   75  such work on July 1, 1981.
   77  The board shall adopt rules providing for the review and
   78  approval of schools or colleges and the courses of study in
   79  engineering in such schools and colleges. The rules must shall
   80  be based on the educational requirements for engineering as
   81  defined in s. 471.005. The board may adopt rules providing for
   82  the acceptance of the approval and accreditation of schools and
   83  courses of study by a nationally accepted accreditation
   84  organization.
   85         Section 3. Subsections (2), (3), (6), and (7) of section
   86  471.015, Florida Statutes, are amended to read:
   87         471.015 Licensure.—
   88         (2)(a) The board shall certify for licensure any applicant
   89  who has submitted proof satisfactory to the board that he or she
   90  is at least 18 years of age and who:
   91         1. Satisfies the requirements of s. 471.013(1)(a)1. and has
   92  a record of 4 years of active engineering experience of a
   93  character indicating competence to be in responsible charge of
   94  engineering; or
   95         2. Satisfies the requirements of s. 471.013(1)(a)2. and has
   96  a record of 6 years of active engineering experience of a
   97  character indicating competence to be in responsible charge of
   98  engineering s. 471.013.
   99         (b) The board may refuse to certify any applicant who has
  100  violated any of the provisions of s. 471.031.
  101         (3) The board shall certify as qualified for a license by
  102  endorsement an applicant who:
  103         (a) Qualifies to take the fundamentals examination and the
  104  principles and practice examination as set forth in s. 471.013,
  105  has passed a United States national, regional, state, or
  106  territorial licensing examination that is substantially
  107  equivalent to the fundamentals examination and principles and
  108  practice examination required by s. 471.013, and has satisfied
  109  the experience requirements set forth in paragraph (2)(a) and s.
  110  471.013; or
  111         (b) Holds a valid license to practice engineering issued by
  112  another state or territory of the United States, if the criteria
  113  for issuance of the license were substantially the same as the
  114  licensure criteria that existed in this state at the time the
  115  license was issued.
  116         (6) The board may require a personal appearance by any
  117  applicant for licensure under this chapter. Any applicant of
  118  whom a personal appearance is required must be given adequate
  119  notice of the time and place of the appearance and provided with
  120  a statement of the purpose of and reasons requiring the
  121  appearance. If an applicant is required to appear, the time
  122  period within which a licensure application must be granted or
  123  denied is tolled until such time as the applicant appears.
  124  However, if the applicant fails to appear before the board at
  125  either of the next two regularly scheduled board meetings, the
  126  application for licensure must be denied.
  127         (7) The board shall, by rule, establish qualifications for
  128  certification of licensees as special inspectors of threshold
  129  buildings, as defined in ss. 553.71 and 553.79, and shall
  130  compile a list of persons who are certified. A special inspector
  131  is not required to meet standards for certification other than
  132  those established by the board, and the fee owner of a threshold
  133  building may not be prohibited from selecting any person
  134  certified by the board to be a special inspector. The board
  135  shall develop minimum qualifications for the qualified
  136  representative of the special inspector who is authorized to
  137  perform inspections of threshold buildings on behalf of the
  138  special inspector under s. 553.79 and shall establish by rule
  139  ongoing training or education requirements for qualified
  140  representatives to maintain their certification or
  141  qualification.
  142         Section 4. Subsection (4) is added to section 471.025,
  143  Florida Statutes, to read:
  144         471.025 Seals.—
  145         (4) A successor engineer seeking to reuse documents
  146  previously sealed by another engineer must be able to
  147  independently re-create all of the work done by the original
  148  engineer. A successor engineer assumes full professional and
  149  legal responsibility by signing and affixing his or her seal to
  150  the assumed documents. Such documents must be treated as though
  151  they were the successor engineer’s original product, and the
  152  original engineer is released from any professional
  153  responsibility or civil liability for prior work assumed by the
  154  successor engineer. For the purposes of this subsection, the
  155  term “successor engineer” means an engineer who is using or
  156  relying upon the work, findings, or recommendations of the
  157  engineer who previously sealed the pertinent documents.
  158         Section 5. Paragraph (a) of subsection (5) of section
  159  553.79, Florida Statutes, is amended to read:
  160         553.79 Permits; applications; issuance; inspections.—
  161         (5)(a) During new construction or during repair or
  162  restoration projects in which the structural system or
  163  structural loading of a building is being modified, the
  164  enforcing agency shall require a special inspector to perform
  165  structural inspections on the a threshold building pursuant to a
  166  structural inspection plan prepared by the engineer or architect
  167  of record. The structural inspection plan must be submitted to
  168  and approved by the enforcing agency before the issuance of a
  169  building permit for the construction of a threshold building.
  170  The purpose of the structural inspection plan is to provide
  171  specific inspection procedures and schedules so that the
  172  building can be adequately inspected for compliance with the
  173  permitted documents. The special inspector may not serve as a
  174  surrogate in carrying out the responsibilities of the building
  175  official, the architect, or the engineer of record. The
  176  contractor’s contractual or statutory obligations are not
  177  relieved by any action of the special inspector. The special
  178  inspector shall determine that a professional engineer who
  179  specializes in shoring design has inspected the shoring and
  180  reshoring for conformance with the shoring and reshoring plans
  181  submitted to the enforcing agency. A fee simple title owner of a
  182  building, which does not meet the minimum size, height,
  183  occupancy, occupancy classification, or number-of-stories
  184  criteria which would result in classification as a threshold
  185  building under s. 553.71(12), may designate such building as a
  186  threshold building, subject to more than the minimum number of
  187  inspections required by the Florida Building Code.
  188         Section 6. This act shall take effect October 1, 2019.