The Board of Dispensing Opticians was established in 1956. Current authority is found at A.R.S. §§32-1671 through 32-1699.
The State Board of Dispensing Opticians (Board) was created in 1956 to license and regulate dispensing opticians. The purpose of the Board is to help assure the competency of dispensing opticians and prevent conduct on their part which would harm the visual health of the public. See Laws 1982, Chapter 209, Section 1, Purpose. In order to practice, a person must have a license issued by the Board.
The Board oversees regulation and licensure of applicants, collects fees, and is authorized to deny, revoke or suspend a license, investigate misconduct, conduct hearings and take disciplinary action as needed.
The Board consists of seven members appointed by the Governor to five-year terms. As a 90/10 board, ten percent of application and license fees collected is deposited in the state General Fund and the remainder is deposited in the Board of Dispensing Opticians Fund.
Laws 1956 Chapter 32 created a five-member Board, specified its membership, outlined its powers and duties, and established fees. The measure prescribed qualifications to obtain a license, authorized the Board to deny, revoke or suspend a license and take disciplinary action. A violation was classified as a misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of $100 for the first offense and $500 for each subsequent offense.
Laws 1958, Chapter 74 created the Board of Dispensing Opticians Fund and prescribed its uses.
Laws 1979, Chapter 201 increased the number of members on the Board from five to seven, adding two lay members; authorized the Board to issue temporary licenses; provided for apprenticeships; and prescribed enforcement powers of the Board.
Laws 1982, Chapter 209 was a sunset continuation bill that made various changes to licensure requirements; increased fees; provided for licensure of optical establishments; authorized the Board to investigate and adjudicate complaints; and modified disciplinary sanctions.
Laws 1992, Chapter 121 established continuing education requirements for licensees.
Laws 2000, Chapter 324 made numerous changes related to: Board powers and duties; applications and requirements for licensure; fees; disciplinary actions; and complaints. The measure also authorized the Board to impose a civil penalty of up to $1,000 for violations.
Laws 2005, Chapter 229 increased maximum fees for specified licenses from $100 to $200.
Laws 2017, Chapter 327 requires a prospective member of the Board, prior to appointment, to submit a full set of fingerprints to the Governor for purposes of conducting a state and federal criminal records check.
Laws 2018, Chapter 241 requires the Board to research and compare licensing requirements of other states and consult with stakeholders and licensees to examine administrative burdens and opportunities to streamline the license application and renewal process. A report of findings and recommendations is due to the Governor and Legislature by December 31, 2018.
Laws 2019, Chapter 195 allowed the Board to authorize its executive director to issue licenses, certifications, registrations, preceptorships, reinstatements and waivers to eligible applicants who meet the requirements identified in the statute. In addition, the Board may issue temporary licenses of thirty days to qualified applicants who meet the statutory requirements and may adopt rules to carry out the new provisions.
A second enactment in 2019 requires the Board to regulate the unauthorized practice of the profession by investigating complaints and referring verified complaints to the county attorney or attorney general for prosecution. See Laws 2019, Chapter 227.
- Arizona Revised Statutes §§32-1671 through 32-1699
- Arizona Administrative Code §§R4-20-101
- Session Laws
- Laws 1956, Chapter 32
- Laws 1958, Chapter 74
- Laws 1979, Chapter 201
- Laws 1982, Chapter 209
- Laws 1992, Chapter 121
- Laws 2000, Chapter 324
- Laws 2005, Chapter 229
- Laws 2017, Chapter 327
- Laws 2018, Chapter 241
- Laws 2019, Chapter 195 and Chapter 227
Related Collections at Arizona State Archives
- Record Group 224 – State Board of Dispensing Opticians