North Carolina State Board of Examiners in Optometry
June 5 - 8, 2008
Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
The North Carolina State Board of Examiners in Optometry met at the Embassy Suites Hotel at Kingston Plantation in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, June 5 – 8, 2008 for the purposes of approving the applicants to take the Summer 2008 Clinical/Practicum examinations, to finalize the examination schedule based upon the number of approved applicants, to review and adopt the budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, 2008 and ending June 30, 2009, to review complaints, to conduct the Annual Meeting to elect officers for the coming year, to monitor continuing education during the Annual Spring Congress of the North Carolina State Optometric Society, and for other purposes. Present were Drs. David Anderson, President, William Hendrix, Secretary/Treasurer and Drs. Joel Banks, Michael Clark, William Rafferty, and Mr. Roger Mitchell and Ms. Mary Richardson, Members of the Board. Also present was Dr. John Robinson, the Board’s Executive Director. Present on Thursday at the 10 A.M. time certain as posted on the agenda was the Board’s attorney, Mr. Johnny Loper, who joined the meeting by way of conference telephone. Also present on Thursday afternoon was Dr. M. Scott Edwards who was placed on the agenda to appear at 3:00 p.m. following an earlier request by his attorney, Steve Smith, that he be given an opportunity to address the Board.
At 8:45 a.m. on Thursday, June 5, 2008 the meeting was called to order by the President who opened the meeting with prayer. Prior to taking up the any item of on the agenda he read aloud the North Carolina Board of Ethics’ “Conflict of Interest” statement.
Approval of Minutes.
On a motion by Dr. Banks seconded by Mr. Mitchell the Minutes of the March 28 - 29, 2008 Meeting were unanimously approved.
On a motion by Dr. Banks seconded by Dr. Hendrix the Minutes of the May 30, 2008 Special Meeting were unanimously approved.
Report of the President.
Dr. Anderson stated that his report would center on the Board’s Clinical/Practicum Examinations and the need to continue invest those resources necessary to provide uniformity in the preparation and scoring of its examinations. He opined that while each administration of the examination has seen improvement over the previous one, the move to have the Clinical Examiners prepare their cases using their own computer and software provided by the Board has proved challenging. The first trial, while considered to be a success, is in need of improvements on the part of the examiners preparing the cases and the Board and its Staff in order that changes can be made in the software based upon the experiences of those preparing the cases. An immediate need for improvement was found in the lack of the preparer’s ability to attach photographs to their cases as they are prepared rather than having to depend on those found in texts, on the internet or other sources. Complete and readable documentation of scores at the examination site continues to be a source of concern. It is the responsibility of each Member of the Board to oversee this portion of the examination. Before leaving at the examination station and proceeding to the next the Board Member must make certain that complete and readable documentation of the scoring is in place rather than having to have the Board’s Staff and/or the Board Members during the review process contact Clinical Examiners in order to gain further insight as to how a particular score was determined.
On a motion by Mr. Mitchell seconded by Ms. Richardson that carried unanimously the report of the President was accepted.
Report of the Secretary Treasurer.
The Secretary-Treasurer presented the Budget Report that covered the period 07/01/07 through 05/30/08. With a month remaining in the fiscal year, Dr. Hendrix noted that those line items in the budget that exceeded the amounts budgeted were the subject of review at the last meeting and that there are no unexpected changes in this report. Based upon the income and expenditures as reflected in this report it appears that Board will end the fiscal year without a deficit. While the interest income cannot be determined until the completion of the annual audit, this report shows that the Board’s revenues for the year exceed the budgeted amounts. This is subject to change, since there are outstanding expenses including meetings, travel, per-diems, legal, utilities, equipment, supplies and other budgeted items that have or will be incurred within the current fiscal year but have not yet been billed and/or paid. The Executive Director will supply each Member a report showing meeting and per-diem expenses that so far have been billed and paid. On review of their report Board Members who find that they have not yet submitted all of their meeting expenses, including this meeting, incurred during this fiscal year should do so before June 30th. It is important that all expenses incurred within a fiscal year be paid prior to the start of the ensuing fiscal year. On a motion by Dr. Rafferty seconded by Ms. Richardson and carried unanimously the Report of the Secretary-Treasurer was accepted.
Report of the Executive Director.
The Executive Director reported:
Mr. President, that concludes my report. On a motion by Dr. Clark seconded by Ms. Richardson and carried unanimously the report of the Executive Director was accepted.
Applicants for the Summer 2008 Clinical/Practicum Examinations. On a motion by Dr. Rafferty seconded by Dr. Clark and carried unanimously the applications for the Summer 2008 Clinical/Practicum were approved subject to each applicant’s application file containing correct and verifiable information, and further that all documents required by the Board are received and in the applicants’ file prior to their appearing for examination; and that the schedule for the Summer Clinical/Practicum Examinations as stated in the Executive Director’s report above be approved. The motion carried unanimously.
Clinical Examiners and Observers. Without objection the President assigned the task of securing commitments from ten of those clinical examiners who have served in the past, starting with the ten who were at the Winter 2008 examinations to the Executive Director and the Board Staff. Observers to be invited are those whose names have been submitted by the Board Members and the Clinical Examiners to the Executive Director.
Review of the Proposed Budget. Upon review of the draft of the budget proposed by the Executive Director and the asking and answering of questions, an increase was made in the income derived from examination fees based upon the numbers of applicants to the two examinations during the current fiscal year.
Executive Session to Evaluate Performance of Staff and Consider Cost of Living and Pay Increases . On a motion by Ms. Richardson seconded by Mr. Mitchell and carried unanimously the Board went into Executive Session to discuss Staff performance, salaries and benefits. Following discussion of the proposed budget and evaluation of the Board’s staff on a motion by Mr. Mitchell seconded by Dr. Banks that carried unanimously the Board returned to open session.
Evaluation of Staff. Reconvening the meeting the President announced that the Board unanimously agreed that the performance of the Board Staff over the past year had been exemplary and that the Members of the Board were deeply appreciative of their dedication and professionalism in the performance of their duties; further, that the Members of the Board were of the opinion that a 5 % increase in the salaries of the Executive Director and the Administrative Secretary and a 8 % increase in the salary of the Administrative Assistant for fiscal year 2007-2008 are recommended.
Employee Retirement Accounts (Seps Accounts) Upon returning to open session and before voting on the adoption of the budget Dr. Banks moved and Ms. Richardson seconded a motion that the Board approve a 10% contribution to the SEP’s accounts of the Executive Director, the Administrative Secretary and the Administrative Assistant based upon salaries recommended for fiscal year 2008-2009. The motion carried unanimously.
Board Office Lease July 1, 2008 – June 30, 2011 On a motion by Mr. Mitchell seconded by Dr. Rafferty and carried unanimously the three year Board Office Lease drafted by the North Carolina Department of Administration, the terms of which have been approved by said Department and stated in the proposed budget as amended was approved for fiscal years beginning, July 1, 2008 and ending June 30, 2011.
Adoption of the Budget. the Secretary-Treasurer presented the amended Budget for fiscal year 2008-2009, said budget reflecting an increase of 5 % in the salaries of the Executive Director and the Administrative Secretary and an increase of 8% in the salary of the Administrative Assistant. Without further discussion on a motion by Dr. Clark seconded by Dr. Banks and carried unanimously the Budget for fiscal year 2008-2009 as presented by the Secretary/Treasurer was adopted.
Licensure by Endorsement. On a motion by Dr. Banks seconded by Dr. Clark the Board unanimously approved the Policy Statement on Licensure by Endorsement as corrected. (Copy to be attached as a part of these minutes)
Report of the Examination Review Committee. Six applicants requesting a review of their examination results appeared in the Board office on Tuesday, April 29, 2008 to review their results. Meeting with each of them as the Examination Review Committee were Dr. Michael Clark, a Member of the Board and the Executive Director. After spending approximately 40 minutes with each of the applicants in a detailed review their examination results as reported to them earlier, the Committee could find no evidence to support the changing of a score as reported to the candidate. Therefore, it is the Committee’s recommendation that the results of the Clinical/Practicum examinations stand as reported to each of these applicants. On a motion by Dr. Banks seconded by Dr. Hendrix and carried unanimously the examination results as reported to these applicants stand as reported to them.
Litigation Update. At 10:40 a.m. Mr. Loper joined the meeting by way of conference telephone. In light of concluding all matters that were the subject of litigation prior to this meeting there was no need to go into closed session. The Board and Mr. Loper took the opportunity during their meeting to clarify issues that sometimes arise when the Board has cause to appoint probable cause committees, how the committees are to proceed in their investigations and in negotiations that can lead to settlement without the need to go to formal hearings. This session lasted for approximately fifteen minutes and ended when there were no further questions for Mr. Loper from Members of the Board.
Annual Audit as Required by State Law. The proposal for performing the Audit of the Board’s financial records for fiscal year beginning July 1, 2007 and ending June 30, 2008 by the Accounting Firm of Waters and Piver was presented. On a motion by Mr. Mitchell seconded by Dr. Clark and carried unanimously the proposal by Mr. Waters on behalf of his firm was accepted.
ARBO/AOA Meeting. As reported and approved in the minutes of the February meeting Drs. Hendrix, Rafferty and the Executive Director will be attending the Annual Meeting of the Association of Regulatory Boards in Optometry on June 22 -24, 2008 in Seattle, WA. Dr. Robinson’s travels also include attending the AOA House of Delegates meetings on June 26-28 to monitor and speak on issues of Board Certification and Licensure by Endorsement in the likelihood that these topics are brought to the floor for discussion. Before leaving the meeting the President appointed Dr. Robinson as the Board’s voting delegate at the ARBO meeting.
Dr. M. Scott Edwards’ Appearance before the Board. At 3:00 p.m. Dr. Edwards appeared following an earlier request made through his attorney, Steve Smith, that he be allowed to address the Board at some point during this meeting. As a courtesy to Dr. Edwards since he had asked that he be allowed to address the Board in the absence of the Board Staff, the Executive Director left the meeting room after arranging for Mr. Mitchell to make those notes necessary to construct the minutes for this portion of the meeting. While 15 minutes were allotted on the meeting Agenda, a copy of which had been furnished Dr. Edwards prior to Boards arrival in Myrtle Beach, his appearance took approximately an hour and a half. From Mr. Mitchell’s notes “In the absence of the Executive Director from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. which was in open session, Dr. Edwards addressed the Board. During this time he summarized the events leading up to and following his felony charge and conviction. Dr. Edwards did not request or direct any questions to any of the Board Members. His stated purpose for addressing the Board was to provide his version of those events. He concluded by thanking the Board for providing him the time”. At 4:35 p.m. the Executive Director returned to the room and the Board meeting resumed.
Summer 2008 Clinical/Practicum Examination Dates. The Board Members and the Clinical Examiners are to arrive in Raleigh and meet in Room 9 at the Jane McKimmon Center in Raleigh at 4 o’clock p.m. on Thursday, July 31st. The first examination session will start promptly at 7:40 a.m. on Friday, August 1st. Breakfast will be served each of the four days beginning at 7:00 a.m. There are to be three sessions on Friday, Saturday and Sunday and one on Monday.
Meeting Dates to Determine the Examination Results. The meeting to determine the results of the Summer 2008 Clinical/Practicum Examinations will be held in the Board’s office in Wallace beginning at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, August 22, 2008. It is anticipated that the meeting will be adjourned no later than 5:-00 p.m. on Saturday, August 23rd.
Examination Review. The review of the Summer 2008 examination results for those applicants wishing to review their results will be held in Wallace at the Board’s offices on Wednesday, October 8, 2008 beginning as early as 9:00 a.m. (depending on the numbers of applicants requesting a review of their results).
Annual Meeting. The Annual Meeting to elect officers was held at 12:00 p.m. in the Eaton Room at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Myrtle Beach, SC as previously scheduled. Elected President for 2008-2009 was Dr. Joel Banks. Dr. William Hendrix was re-elected as Secretary/Treasurer. (see minutes of 2008 Annual Meeting).
The remainder of the time in Myrtle Beach was spent in monitoring the continuing education programs at the Spring Meeting of the North Carolina Optometric Society which began on Friday, June 6 and ended on Sunday June 8, 2007.
There being no further business the meeting of the Board was officially adjourned at noon on Sunday, June 8, 2008. The next meeting will be at the Jane McKimmon Center in Raleigh, NC beginning at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, July 31, 2008.
Raleigh, North Carolina