SUMMARY OF: A Sunset Review of the Department of Commerce, Community, and Economic Development, Board of Examiners in Optometry


Why DLA Performed This Audit

The audit was performed to determine if there is a continued need for the board and if its termination date should be extended. The board is set to sunset on June 30, 2022, and will have one year from that date to conclude its administrative operations.

Report Conclusions

Overall, the audit concluded, with certain exceptions, that board operations were conducted in the public’s interest. The board conducted its meetings in compliance with state laws, effectively licensed optometrists, and actively amended regulations to address statutory changes and improve the licensing process. The Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licensing (DCBPL) staff failed to operate in the public’s interest by not consistently recording licensees with federal Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) registration numbers in the licensing database, not ensuring continuing education audits were conducted timely, and not monitoring licensees’ compliance with requirements for continuing education in pain management and opioid use and addiction. In accordance with AS 08.03.010(c)(15), the board is scheduled to terminate on June 30, 2022. We recommend the legislature extend the board’s termination date to June 30, 2028, which is two years less than the maximum allowed in statute. The reduced extension reflects the need for more routine oversight in recognition of audit findings.

Findings and Recommendations

  1. DCBPL’s director should dedicate resources to ensure licensees holding a DEA number are consistently recorded in the licensing database.
  2. The board chair and DCBPL’s director should change the license renewal form to allow the board to monitor compliance with continuing education requirements.
  3. DCBPL’s director should ensure adequate resources are available to perform continuing education audits.