Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board Amends Its Procedural Rules
According to its statutory mandate to periodically review and revise its rules, the Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board has amended Part 1130 of its rules, which govern the Board's procedural processes, now referred to as operational rules. This newsletter summarizes these changes.
The Illinois Health Facilities and Services Review Board (HFSRB, or Board) has been in the process of amending Part 1130 of its rules (77 Il.Adm.Code 1130, et seq.) for some time. The amendments have completed the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules review comment period and are final. The amendments are effective as of June 1, 2013, and apply to all applications in the review process and all projects for which permits or exemption have been issued but have not been completed.
Many changes to Part 1130 were made. This newsletter highlights only the more substantive changes.
A new concept was introduced in 1130.140 with the definition of a “Permit Acceptance Agreement.” It is defined as a “written HFSRB communication to the permit holder, specifying and consolidating all post permit requirements necessary to maintain the permit.” The reference in substantive sections of Part 1130 to a Permit Acceptance Agreement (PAA) occurs in a section regarding conditions on a permit, and it is unclear whether the PAA will be used only with respect to the conditions on a permit, or with respect to the general post-permit requirements as well.
In addition, a new definition titled “Relinquishment of a Permit” allows a voluntary and knowing abandonment of a permit or exemption with the understanding the inventory will be modified, if affected by the permit relinquishment, to the same status as existed prior to the permit issuance. In later language within Part 1130 the Board now will require a permit or exemption holder request approval from the HFSRB to relinquish a permit, and assess a fee of $1,000 for doing so. Failure to request approval and pay the fee is a violation, subjecting the permit or exemption holder to sanctions and penalties.
Also in the definition section now is “Substantially Complete,” which means that an application for a permit has been determined ready for review with the understanding that additional information may be needed for clarification during the course of the review period. This latter definition is likely to memorialize the HFSRB’s current practice of deeming an application complete while nonetheless seeking additional information pertaining to the application during the review period.
Another section delineates the general guidelines for board meetings, which is consistent with recent HFSRB practice at board meetings. However, it adds provisions that written or oral statements made under oath to HFSRB that are subsequently found to be false or inaccurate may be investigated by the Board, and that the individual making them may be required to appear before the Board and may be determined ineligible to provide written comments or oral statements concerning any future Board considerations.
Additionally, the Board now has the ability to revoke an exemption for various reasons and the Board Chair may now approve applications for a permit that meet all of the Board’s review criteria and are unopposed.
While there are many other changes within Part 1130, most of them are meant to coordinate the rules to the changes to the Illinois Health Facilities Planning Act, which became effective in 2009, such as the elimination of certain exemption requirements, and to nomenclature. However, there are some substantive changes not touched upon here, and anyone who is impacted by the Certificate of Need and Exemption process should review the amendments carefully.