(1) The Department of Health shall establish and staff a technical review and advisory panel to assist the department with rule adoption.
(2) The primary purpose of the panel is to assist the department in rulemaking and decisionmaking by drawing on the expertise of representatives from several groups that are affected by onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems. The panel may also review and comment on any legislation or any existing or proposed state policy or issue related to onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems. The chair may also take such other action as is appropriate to allow the panel to function. At a minimum, the panel shall consist of a soil scientist; a professional engineer registered in this state who is recommended by the Florida Engineering Society and who has work experience in onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems; two representatives from the home-building industry recommended by the Florida Home Builders Association, including one who is a developer in this state who develops lots using onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems; a representative from the county health departments who has experience permitting and inspecting the installation of onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems in this state; a representative from the real estate industry who is recommended by the Florida Association of Realtors; a consumer representative with a science background; two representatives of the septic tank industry recommended by the Florida Onsite Wastewater Association, including one who is a manufacturer of onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems; a representative from local government who is knowledgeable about domestic wastewater treatment and who is recommended by the Florida Association of Counties and the Florida League of Cities; and a representative from the environmental health profession who is recommended by the Florida Environmental Health Association and who is not employed by a county health department. Members are to be appointed for a term of 2 years. The panel may also, as needed, be expanded to include ad hoc, nonvoting representatives who have topic-specific expertise. All rules proposed by the department which relate to onsite sewage treatment and disposal systems must be presented to the panel for review and comment prior to adoption. The panel’s position on proposed rules shall be made a part of the rulemaking record that is maintained by the agency. The panel shall select a chair, who shall serve for a period of 1 year and who shall direct, coordinate, and execute the duties of the panel. The panel shall also solicit input from the department’s variance review and advisory committee before submitting any comments to the department concerning proposed rules. The panel’s comments must include any dissenting points of view concerning proposed rules. The panel shall hold meetings as it determines necessary to conduct its business, except that the chair, a quorum of the voting members of the panel, or the department may call meetings. The department shall keep minutes of all meetings of the panel. Panel members shall serve without remuneration, but, if requested, shall be reimbursed for per diem and travel expenses as provided in s. 112.061.
History.—s. 9, ch. 93-151; s. 4, ch. 96-303; s. 182, ch. 97-101; s. 3, ch. 98-420; s. 193, ch. 99-13; s. 32, ch. 2003-1; s. 2, ch. 2008-215; s. 36, ch. 2012-184.