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CSOMATS 2319 Asal

COMMITTEE ON THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

JENNINGS RANDOLPH, West Virginia, Chairman
AMBROSE J. KENNEDY, Maryland

EVERETT M. DIRKSEN, Illinois
WILLIAM T. SCHULTE, Indiana

GEORGE J. BATES, Massachusetts
JACK NICHOLS, Oklahoma

PAUL W. SHAFER, Michigan
DAN R. MCGEHEE, Mississippi

STEPHEN BOLLES, Wisconsin
JOE B. BATES, Kentucky

ALBERT L. VREELAND, New Jersey
WILLIAM D. BYRON, Maryland

JAMES SECCOMBE, Ohio
PIUS L. SCHWERT, New York

HARRY SANDAGER, Rhode Island
JOSEPH A. MCARDLE, Pennsylvania
FRANK W. FRIES, Illinois
HERMAN P. EBERHARTER, Pennsylvania
RUDOLPH G. TENEROWICZ, Michigan
WILLIAM R. POAGE, Texas
JOHN F. HUNTER, Ohio

SUBCOMMITTEE ON PUBLIC HEALTH, HOSPITALS, AND CHARITIES

JOE B. BATES, Kentucky, Chairman
WILLIAM T. SCHULTE, Indiana

PAUL W. SHAFER, Michigan
WILLIAM D. BYRON, Maryland

ALBERT L. VREELAND, New Jersey
RUDOLPH G. TENEROWICZ, Maryland HARRY SANDAGER, Rhode Island

TO REGULATE THE PRACTICE OF OPTOMETRY IN THE

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

WEDNESDAY, MAY 10, 1939

HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, SUBCOMMITTEE ON PUBLIC HEALTH, HOSPITALS, AND CHARITIES OF THE COMMITTEE ON THE DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA,

Washington, D. C. The Subcommittee on Public Health, Hospitals, and Charities of the Committee on the District of Columbia met in the committee room, Old House Office Building, at 10:30 a. m., the Hon. Joe B. Bates, chairman of the subcommittee, presiding.

Also present: Hon. William T. Schulte, Hon. William D. Byron, and Hon. Rudolph G. Tenerowicz, members; and Hon. Jack Nichols and Hon. Howard W. Smith, authors of the bills.

Mr. BATEs. The hearing will please come to order. The hearing starting this morning is on H. R. 278, a bill introduced by Mr. Smith of Virginia, "To regulate the practice of optometry in the District of Columbia"; and,

A bill introduced by Mr. Nichols of Oklahoma, H. R. 5238, “To regulate the practice of optometry in the District of Columbia.” Without objection, the bills will be inserted in the record. (H. R. 278 and H. R. 5238 are as follows:)

[H. R. 278, 76th Cong., 1st sess.)

A BILL To regulate the practice of optometry in the District of Columbia

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Repres tatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

SECTION 1. That the practice of optometry is defined as the science and art devoted to the examination of the eyes, the analysis of the ocular functions and the employment of preventive or corrective optometric methods and agents for the relief of visual and ocular anomalies.

SEC. 2. That in order to safeguard life and health, any person practicing, offering, undertaking, or holding himself out as being able to practice optometry in the District of Columbia shall be licensed as hereinafter provided. A license to practice optometry heretofore duly issued, pursuant to law and valid when this Act is enacted, shall serve the same purpose as and is hereby declared to be the license required by this Act, and the holder of such valid license heretofore duly issued shall be considered to be a person licensed under the provisions of this Act.

Sec. 3. That the Commissioners of the District of Columbia shall appoint a Board of Optometry consisting of five persons. Notwithstanding anything herein contained, the present members of the Board of Optometry shall continue in office as the first members of the Board of Optometry herein established, until their respective terms expire. Each member of the Board of Optometry shall be selected from a list of optometrists submitted by a majority vote at a regular meeting of the District of Columbia Optometric Society, which list shall contain not less than two names for each member to be ap

pointed. Each member of the Board shall be a citizen of the United States, over the age of twenty-one years, actually engaged in the practice of optometry as defined in section 1 of this Act, and shall have been engaged in the actual and continuous practice of the same in the District of Columbia for at least three years next preceding his appointment. As the terms of the present members of the Board of Optometry expire, the Commissioners shall appoint a successor or successors to serve for a term of three years; and in case of death, resignation or removal of any member, the vacancy for the unexpired term shall be filled by the said Commissioners in the same manner as other appointments.

Each appointee to the Board of Optometry as hereinbefore provided for shall, within fifteen days from the date of his appointment, qualify by subscribing to the following oath of office before any office authorized to administer oaths in the District of Columbia : "I do solemnly swear that I will faithfully, impartially, with fidelity, and according to law, perform the duties of a member of the Board of Optometry of the District of Columbia, to the best of my ability, so help me God."

Upon such oath being filed with the Commissioners, they shall issue to said member a certificate of his appointment.

The Commissioners are herewith vested with authority to remove from office at any time any member of said Board for neglect of duty, incompetency, improper conduct, or when the license to practice optometry of any member of said Board shall have been suspended or revoked.

SEC. 4. That the Board of Optometry shall hold an annual meeting and at such annual meeting shall organize by electing a president, a vice president, and a secretary-treasurer, who shall hold office for one year or until their respective successors have been appointed and have qualified. Said Board shall hold a meeting at the end of six months after the annual meeting at such hour and place as it may designate for the examination of applicants for license to practice optometry in the District of Columbia and for the transaction of such other business as may legally come before it. The Board may hold such additional meetings upon the call of the president or a majority of the members of said Board as may become necessary for the examination of applicants for licenses or for carrying into effect the provisions of this Act. Three members of the Board shall constitute a quorum for the transiction of business, and should a quorum not be present on the day appointed for any meeting, those present may adjourn from time to time until a quorum be present.

The Board shall have power to appoint from its membership committees, the duties of which shall be to consider such matters pertaining to the enforcement of this Act and the regulations promulgated in accordance therewith as shall be referred to them and to make recommendations to the Board with respect thereto. The Board, any committee, or any member thereof, shall be entitled to the services of the Corporation Counsel of the District of Columbia, and shall have the power to issue subpenas and subpenas duces tecum to compel the attendance of witnesses and the production of books, records and documents, to administer oaths, and to take testimony concerning all matters within its or his jurisdiction. The Board shall not be bound by strict rules of procedure or by the laws of evidence in the conduct of its proceedings but the determination shall be founded upon sufficient legal evidence to sustain it. The Board shall have the right to institute an action in its own name to enjoin the violation of any of the provisions of this Act or the regulations promulgated in accordance therewith and in such connection a temporary injunction may be granted. The said action for an injunction shall be in addition to any other action, proceeding, or remedy authorized by law. The Board shall also have power, subject to the approval of the Commissioners of the District of Columbia, to make such rules and regulations not inconsistent with laws as may be necessary for the performance of its duties, the regulation of the practice of optometry and the enforcement of this Act.

Before entering upon the discharge of the duties of his office the secretarytreasurer of the Board shall give such bond for the performance of his duties as the Commissioners of the District of Columbia shall require, the premium of such bond to be paid from the funds in the possession of the Board.

The secretary-treasurer shall receive as compensation for his services an annual salary to be determined by the Board, which salary and all other expenses of the Board necessary in carrying out the provisions of this Act shall be paid from the funds in the custody of the secretary-treasurer for the rise of the Board upon requisition signed by the secretary-treasurer and countersigned by the president of the Board ; and on the 30th day of June of each year

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