Ontario’s financial regulator makes deal on troubled credit union: Weekly regulatory news 
Regulatory news May 2
The Week in Brief is your weekly snapshot of regulatory news and what's happening in the world of professional licensing, government technology, and public policy. Ontario’s financial regulator makes deal to sell core business of troubled credit union, the American Dental Association falls victim to cyberattack, and more in our Week in Brief.

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Louisiana House Commerce Committee approves occupational licensing reforms

Louisiana’s House Commerce Committee members unanimously approved two House bills that would help previously incarcerated individuals and improve the licensing process. HB 639 would allow previously incarcerated individuals the opportunity to petition licensing boards before attending school or training to determine if a past conviction disqualifies them from obtaining a license. The bill would give the licensing entity 45 days to make a determination. It also provides a means for the individual to appeal the decision. HB 597 would allow individuals to request a review of a regulation from an occupational licensing board to ensure the regulation is the least restrictive method of regulating the occupation. The bill – which would force occupational licensing boards to justify the legitimate fiduciary, public health, safety, or welfare objection of restrictive regulations – is meant to help the many Louisianans across occupations who have faced regulatory roadblocks in obtaining licenses that have prevented them from working. Both bills are now before the full House for consideration. Read more at The Center Square.

Michigan requiring implicit bias training for health professionals as of June 1

Michigan’s Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs (LARA) has revised Public Health Code Rules to require implicit bias training for all professions licensed or registered under the Public Health Code, except for veterinary medicine, effective June 1. First-time applicants for licensure or registration must have completed a minimum of two hours of implicit bias training within the previous five years, while those renewing licenses or registrations must complete one hour of implicit bias training for each year of their license or registration cycle. Read more on the Michigan Health & Hospital Association (MHA) website.

Ontario’s financial regulator makes deal to sell core business of troubled credit union

The Financial Services Regulatory Authority of Ontario (FSRA) has reached a deal to split PACE Savings & Credit Union in two, merging its core business with another undisclosed credit union and hiving off PACE’s more contentious assets and liabilities in an entity to be wound up later. FSRA said the merger “will set a new course for PACE” and give members “a more certain future” after years of scandal, legal battles, and failed turnaround plans. PACE has been under the control of FSRA and a previous regulator for more than three years, since regulators seized control and ousted the credit union’s president and CEO in 2018. FSRA is still fighting legal claims on PACE’s behalf to try to recover millions of dollars from former senior executives and directors who were terminated and accused of fraud, misconduct, and mismanagement of the credit union. Read more from The Globe and Mail.

American Dental Association hit by ransomware attack, causing disruption to various services

The American Dental Association (ADA) was hit by a cyberattack on the weekend of April 22, causing them to shut down portions of their network while they work with cybersecurity specialists and law enforcement to investigate. A new ransomware group known as Black Basta has since claimed responsibility for the attack, which has disrupted the ADA’s various online services, telephones, email, and webchat. It has also impacted state dental associations, such as those in New York, Virginia, and Florida, who rely on ADA’s online services to register an account or pay dues. Soon after publishing its initial story on the attack, BleepingComputer reported that the cyber criminals had begun leaking stolen data, including personal information on ADA members. Read more at BleepingComputer.

Indiana makes changes to temporary licensing system for special education teachers

Indiana’s Department of Education is making changes to a temporary licensing system that provides emergency permits for special education teachers. To address a shortage of special education instructors that has existed for some time, many districts have had teachers who aren’t fully licensed for special education obtain one-year emergency licenses which could be renewed as many times as needed. However, with this new change, which comes after Indiana was discovered to be in violation of federal law, instructors will be limited to three years of teaching special education without full certification. Read more at FOX59.

More than 250 contract nurses filling gaps in Sask. health care

Facing ongoing labor shortages and yet another wave of COVID-19 hospitalizations, the province of Saskatchewan is hiring hundreds of contract staff to keep the health care system afloat. The Saskatchewan Health Authority confirmed it has contracted 260 health staff for 2022, more than five times the estimated 40 to 50 staff it hired in 2019. The province’s nursing union says the growing reliance on private contractors — who tend to be paid significantly more than permanent employees — is proof of a human resourcing crisis. Read more at The Saskatoon StarPhoenix.

More news:

  • A chiropractor in Fairbanks, Alaska is facing charges he sexually assaulted a patient during a 2021 treatment, an accusation that triggered the suspension of his license this month. Norman Todd Lovell, 58, was indicted by a Fairbanks grand jury last month on a felony count of second-degree sexual assault.
  • State marijuana regulators in Ohio are changing the definition of THC to include more cannabinoids, including those traditionally found in hemp, to close a regulatory loophole.
  • The Government of Alberta has allocated $30 million CAD towards AI research and development over the next three years as part of its new innovation strategy, which aims to turn Alberta into an internationally recognized tech hub.

Also noteworthy:

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Ariel Visconti
Written byAriel Visconti
Ariel Visconti researches and writes on government and politics, regulation, occupational licensing, and emerging technologies.

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