256.480. 1. Any person may bring a complaint alleging a violation of sections 256.450 to 256.483 or the rules promulgated thereunder. The board shall investigate all complaints brought to its attention, and in connection therewith may employ investigators, expert witnesses and hearing officers and conduct hearings to determine whether disciplinary action should be taken.
2. A person filing a complaint shall make the complaint in writing, swear to be the person making the charges, and shall file the complaint with the secretary of the board. Any person who reports or provides information to the board in good faith is not subject to an action for civil damages by the board. The board shall hear all charges, except those which the board determines are unfounded or unsupported by the evidence.
3. A copy of the complaint, together with notice setting forth the charge or charges to be heard and the time and place of the hearing, shall be served by the secretary of the board upon any person, firm or corporation against which charges are filed. The complaint shall be conveyed by registered mail to the last known address of the person, firm or corporation subject to the complaint.
4. The board shall have the authority to subpoena witnesses and compel their attendance and to require the production of books, papers, reports, documents, and similar material in connection with any investigation or hearing conducted by the board. Any member of the board may administer oaths or affirm to witnesses appearing before the board. If any witness refuses to obey the subpoena or refuses to testify or to produce evidence as authorized, the board may petition the circuit court to issue such subpoena and compel such attendance and production.
5. If the board determines that a person, firm or corporation is engaged in an act or practice in violation of sections 256.450 to 256.483 or the rules promulgated thereunder, the board may issue a temporary order directing the recipient to cease and desist such act or practice, or directing the recipient to take specified actions necessary to comply with sections 256.450 to 256.483. The recipient of the order may request a hearing on the matter within fifteen days after receipt of the temporary order. The temporary order shall remain in effect until a final order is issued following such hearing, and shall become final after fifteen days, if no hearing is requested. Any person aggrieved by a final order of the board may appeal the order to the administrative hearing commission in the manner provided in section 621.120.
6. If the board determines the activities of a registered geologist present an imminent danger to public health, safety or welfare, the board may issue an order for the immediate and temporary suspension of the geologist's certificate of registration for a period of up to thirty days. Any person whose registration has been suspended under this subsection may request a hearing on the matter within fifteen days after receipt of the order of suspension.
7. The board may request that the attorney general seek an injunction to restrain any violation of sections 256.450 to 256.483.
8. Any person aggrieved by a final order or action of the board imposing sanctions or other actions under sections 256.450 to 256.483 may, after exhausting any administrative remedies provided under sections 256.450 to 256.483 and section 621.120, appeal such decision or action as provided in sections 536.100 to 536.140.
(L. 1994 S.B. 649)
Missouri General Assembly