(a) When the board, by its official actions, acts or proposes to act in a manner which will affect the rights, duties, or privileges of the issuance of a license to an applicant or the license of a veterinarian, veterinary technician, or other individual, those persons shall have a right to an administrative hearing. When the board proposes to act in such manner, it shall give to the person or persons notice of their right to a hearing by certified mail to the person at his or her last known address, a notice of the proposed action, notice of a right to a hearing, and the time and place for a hearing, as provided in subsection (b). If the person or persons fail to appear at the time set for the hearing, the hearing may be conducted in absentia.
(b) A hearing shall be held no sooner than 20 days after written notice to the licensed veterinarian, veterinary technician, or other individual of the administrative charges against him or her, or to the applicant in the case of a person whose application for license is denied. The applicant, licensed veterinarian, veterinary technician, or other individual shall have the right to be heard in person and by counsel, the right to have subpoenaed the attendance of witnesses and records in the behalf of, and the right to cross-examine witnesses appearing against him or her. Strict rules of evidence shall not apply. The board may provide a stenographer or other stenographic means to take down the testimony and shall preserve a record of the proceedings. If a transcript of the record is prepared and is, by definition, a matter of public record, it may be purchased by any person interested in such hearing on payment to the board of the cost of preparing the transcript.
(c) The board shall notify the applicant, licensed veterinarian, veterinary technician, or other individual of its decision in writing within a reasonable time after the conclusion of the hearing. The executive director or his or her designee, in all cases of suspension, revocation, or other discipline, shall enter the fact in the minutes of the board. Any person whose license is suspended or revoked shall be deemed an unlicensed person for purposes of this article and the probate court of that county or counties where the license should be filed shall be notified, the license pulled, and the fact published in the newsletter of the board. The board shall also cause a notice of revocation or suspension to be published in a newspaper of general circulation in each county of the State of Alabama in which the disciplined veterinarian maintains an office for the practice of veterinary medicine or veterinary technician is employed or the individual resides.
(d) When a member of the board is unable to continue the hearing either by disqualification or for any other reason, and the board is unable to obtain a quorum, the Governor shall appoint as many special members as is necessary to obtain a quorum from a list of three persons submitted for each place by the Alabama Veterinary Medical Association. These special members serve on the board only for that hearing for which they were appointed and the special members may be reappointed for subsequent hearings if necessary.
Last modified: May 3, 2021