By Dimitri A. Davis
On August 3, 2022, the California Board of Accountancy (CBA) published notice of its intent to amend sections 87, 88, 88.1, 88.2, 89, and 90 of Title 16 of the California Code of Regulations (CCR) relating to continuing education (CE). According to the initial statement of reasons, the purpose of these proposed changes is to provide licensees with increased access and greater flexibility in completing CE hours required for license renewal, which would ultimately benefit consumers as the recipients of public accountancy services.
As codified in the Business and Professions Code, the California Legislature “determined it is in the public interest to require that certified public accountants and public accountants licensed under provisions of this chapter comply with CE requirements adopted by the board as a prerequisite to the renewal of public accountancy licenses” (section 5026). To that end, CBA is required to prescribe, amend, and repeal regulations related to various areas and requirements associated with continuing education, including basic requirements, number of hours required for license renewal, subject areas and matters, learning methodologies, provider requirements, and documentation.
According to the initial statement of reasons, this proposed regulatory action would update and modernize the CBA’s CE requirements to include three new learning methodologies, add four technical subject areas for a wider variety of technical subject areas for which a licensee may earn CE credit, allow CE to be earned in increments, and include CE requirements that were inadvertently omitted from the CBA’s 2014 CE rulemaking. These proposed amendments would provide increased CE opportunities in a wider variety of technical subject areas to maintain or improve the competency of licensees in providing public accounting services to the benefit of California consumers.
CBA anticipates that, if successful, these proposed changes would have little to no fiscal impact on federal and state funds.
The public comment period will end on October 4, 2022. CBA has not scheduled a public hearing on this proposed action. CBA will hold a hearing if it receives a written request for a public hearing from any interested person no later than 15 days prior to the close of the written comment period.