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Peace officer certification revoked for unprofessional conduct, improper dealings with inmates.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1707311 , Decision Date: 2016-11-08 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

The Georgia Peace Officer Standards and Training (POST) Council properly revoked the POST certification of a former corrections officer based on evidence that the officer possessed an unauthorized weapon (a shank) around violent inmates, gave special treatment to homosexual inmates, and allowed an inmate with [..] Read More..

Superior Court upholds OSAH Decision on Outdoor Advertising Control Act.

Topic: Outdoor Advertising, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1502559 , Decision Date: 2016-07-15 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision on appeal. 

The Fulton County Superior Court affirmed an OSAH Judge’s Decision holding that LED signs located behind glass panes on a building and visible to the outside public were subject to regulation under the Outdoor Advertising Control Act.  The Superior Court also concurred with the OSAH Judge’s holding [..] Read More..

Amendments to the professional licensing statute apply prospectively.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1653672 , Decision Date: 2016-10-31 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Legislative amendments to the professional licensing statute that disallowed licensing boards from refusing to grant a license due to a felony conviction unless such felony directly related to the occupation for which the applicant sought licensure went into effect on July 1, 2016 and applied [..] Read More..

State could not rely on documentation of criminal conviction to meet its burden in administrative case.

Topic: Educators, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1648876 , Decision Date: 2016-08-12 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

The Professional Standards Commission sought to sanction an educator’s certificate based, in part, on her alleged violation of the standards governing honesty, confidentiality, and required reports.  However, the Commission introduced no evidence in support of the allegations at the hearing, but instead relied on the [..] Read More..

Elimination of railroad crossing must be reasonably necessary in the interest of public safety.

Topic: Railroad Crossings, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1619206 , Decision Date: 2016-05-27 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

A railroad company petitioned the City of Royston to eliminate four highway-rail grade crossings.   The City denied the petition, but employed none of the criteria for evaluating a crossing’s safety.  After applying said criteria, the Georgia Department of Transportation (GDOT) determined that two of the [..] Read More..

Constitutionality of warrantless blood test not within the scope of hearing.

Topic: DUI, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1649872 , Decision Date: 2016-07-06 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Whether the United States Supreme Court’s holding in Birchfield v. North Dakota invalidates the Georgia implied consent statute’s requirement that a driver submit to a warrantless test of his or her blood is outside of the scope of an administrative license suspension hearing.

Principal suspended for misuse of school funds.

Topic: Educators, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1638782 , Decision Date: 2016-06-22 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

After her plan to cater an alumni event hosted at her school fell through, a principal directed the caterer, whom she had improperly paid directly from school funds, to deliver the food to her friend’s party.  The Commission sought to suspend the principal’s educator certificate [..] Read More..

Revocation of registration to operate daycare does not require denial of paraprofessional license.

Topic: Educators, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1629432 , Decision Date: 2016-04-01 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

The Professional Standards Commission denied Petitioner’s paraprofessional license application due to a 2012 arrest that resulted in the revocation of her registration to operate a daycare center.  Petitioner was arrested for Cruelty to Children in 2012 due to her conduct in leaving children in her [..] Read More..

Civil penalty amount unsupported where no residents were in facility’s care.

Topic: Health Law, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1627302 , Decision Date: 2016-02-18 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

The Department of Community Health was authorized to fine a community living arrangement (CLA) based on the failure of the owner to be present, or ensure that a staff member was present, during an annual inspection.  However, the Department’s proposed fine amount was unsupported inasmuch [..] Read More..

LPN’s license revoked for diverting meds and failing to undergo examination.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1628845 , Decision Date: 2016-03-14 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

A licensed practical nurse (LPN) was ordered by the Georgia Board of Nursing to undergo a mental/physical examination following conduct in 2012 involving diverting narcotics, destroying records, and testing positive for opiates.  The Board sought to revoke the LPN’s license after she failed to comply [..] Read More..

Indoor signs communicating advertisement to the outdoor public subject to regulation.

Topic: Outdoor Advertising, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1502559 , Decision Date: 2015-11-12 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Advertisements visible to, and intended to be visible to, the outdoor traveling public are subject to regulation under the Georgia Outdoor Advertising Control Act, even where they are physically located inside of a building.  Further, LED signs with changing messages are subject to regulation because, [..] Read More..

Septic tank contractor decertified for faulty repairs, questionable business practices.

Topic: Public Health, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1558056 , Decision Date: 2015-07-31 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Petitioner performed faulty repairs on an on-site sewage management system.  Specifically, he unnecessarily installed cleanout pipes in the system’s drainfield, treated the system with harsh chemicals, and failed to apply glue to pipe components, causing damage to the septic system.  Petitioner also failed to apply [..] Read More..

Cost of in-home services must be within program guidelines.

Topic: Health Law, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: ***** , Decision Date: 2015-05-14 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Petitioner, an individual with significant care needs owing to a brain injury, applied for in-home services through the independent care waiver program (“ICWP”).  Because Petitioner required care twenty-four hours per day due to her mental and physical deficits, and she received no informal support from [..] Read More..

Pain management physician’s medical license revoked for unprofessional conduct.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1508993 , Decision Date: 2015-03-16 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Petitioner, a physician working in a pain management clinic, exhibited numerous instances of unprofessional conduct related to prescribing controlled substances, resulting in revocation of her medical license. Petitioner violated minimum standards of acceptable and prevailing medical practice when she failed to appropriately monitor, evaluate, and [..] Read More..

Center restricted, fined for leaving child on vehicle and failure to report child missing.

Topic: Early Care & Learning, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1519961 , Decision Date: 2015-02-19 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

A child in the care of Petitioner, a daycare center, was left alone on the center’s van during afternoon transportation after the driver failed to physically check the vehicle or adequately complete transportation logs.  A passing motorist found the child wandering alongside a road and [..] Read More..

Board’s erroneous reinstatement of property appraiser does not preclude revocation.

Topic: Real Estate, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1511101 , Decision Date: 2014-12-18 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Respondent, a real property appraiser, allowed his classification to lapse.  His license was thereafter revoked, but the Georgia Real Estate Appraisers Board failed to update its records to reflect the change in status from “lapsed” to “revoked.”  As a result, the Board inadvertently allowed Respondent [..] Read More..

Center may not receive reimbursement for services provided to owner’s foster children.

Topic: Early Care & Learning, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1509571 , Decision Date: 2014-11-03 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Petitioner, the owner of a child care learning center, received payment through the Childcare and Parent Services (CAPS) Program for child care services provided at the center to her four foster children.  The Department of Early Care and Learning (DECAL) was authorized to recover these [..] Read More..

Failure to appear resulted in case dismissal.

Topic: Procedure, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1505029  , Decision Date: 2014-09-30 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Petitioner waived or abandoned her right to contest the proposed sanction to her teaching certificate when she failed to file a required pleading, failed to appear at the hearing, and failed to participate in the proceeding.  Accordingly, the matter was dismissed.

Non-restricted conditioned air contracting license revoked for felony convictions and nondisclosure.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1458952 , Decision Date: 2014-09-04 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Since 1983, Respondent held a non-restricted license to engage in conditioned air contracting.  In 2003, he was convicted of violating the Georgia Racketeering and Corrupt Organizations Act, receiving stolen property, a felony charge of theft by taking, and misdemeanor charge of theft by taking.  Respondent [..] Read More..

Court of Appeals affirms revocation of teaching certificate.

Topic: Educators, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1309128 , Decision Date: 2012-11-16 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision on appeal. 

The Georgia Court of Appeals reversed the Superior Court of Dougherty County’s decision, which had reversed Judge Howell’s decision affirming the Professional Standard Commission’s revocation of an educator’s teaching certificate. The Court determined that contrary to the superior court’s ruling, the educator had sufficient notice [..] Read More..

Revocation of teaching certificate too extreme a penalty for two misdemeanor convictions.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1446415 , Decision Date: 2014-07-14 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

The Professional Standards Commission (PSC) sought to revoke Petitioner’s teaching certificate after Petitioner was convicted of misdemeanor marijuana possession on two occasions, and thereafter failed to report these convictions within the required ninety days. However, as the convictions were misdemeanors and Petitioner’s failure to report [..] Read More..

Citation from the Georgia Real Estate Commission became a Final Order after licensee failed to respond within 30 days.

Topic: Real Estate, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1454348 , Decision Date: 2014-07-15 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Respondent engaged in improper advertising for real properties and failed to notify the Georgia Real Estate Commission of his change of address. The Commission issued a citation ordering Respondent to pay a fine of $400.00 and complete a three-hour educational course. Respondent failed to pay [..] Read More..

Revocation appropriate for Licensed Practical Nurse’s fraud in completing registered nurse application.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1452782 , Decision Date: 2014-07-21 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Georgia Board of Medical Examiners was authorized to revoke Respondent’s license to practice as a licensed practical nurse (LPN) based upon her forgery of a signature on an application to be licensed as a registered professional nurse (RN). Although the Board had discretion to impose [..] Read More..

Petitioner will receive real estate salesperson’s license despite two drug offenses in light of evidence of good character.

Topic: Real Estate, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1452650 , Decision Date: 2014-08-08 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Petitioner appealed the Georgia Real Estate Commission’s denial of his application for a real estate salesperson’s license. Petitioner had two prior convictions for marijuana possession, one a felony and the other a misdemeanor. The denial of Petitioner’s application was reversed where Petitioner showed he completed [..] Read More..

Failure to comply with Consent Order and guard against patient abandonment sufficient to support suspension of license to practice optometry.

Topic: Professional Licensing, Decided by Judge Howells 
Docket Number: 1445578 , Decision Date: 2014-06-30 
Attachment: Click here to download the decision. 

Respondent, an optometrist, was required to pay a $1,000 fine, complete two continuing education hours and submit proof of completion to the Board of Optometrists (the Board) pursuant to a Consent Order. Although Respondent completed the two continuing education hours, she did not timely submit [..] Read More..

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