(A) For purposes of this rule of the Administrative Code, and except as otherwise provided, the following definitions shall apply:
(1) "Armed forces" means the armed forces of the United States including the army, navy, air force, marine corps, coast guard, or any reserve components of those forces; the national guard of any state; the commissioned corps of the United States public health service; the merchant marine service during wartime; such other service as may be designated by congress; or the Ohio organized militia when engaged in full-time national guard duty for a period of more than thirty days.
(2) "Member" means any person who is serving in the armed forces.
(3) "Veteran" means any person who has completed service in the armed forces, including the national guard of any state, or a reserve component of the armed forces, and who has been discharged under honorable conditions as evidenced on the individual's DD-214 form, or who has been transferred to the reserve.
(B) Eligibility for licensure.
In accordance with section 5903.03 of the Revised Code, the following military programs of training, military primary specialties, and lengths of service are substantially equivalent to or exceed the education and experience requirements for a license as a:
(1) Dispensing spectacle optician.
(a) Military programs of training.
Tri-service optician school, a division of the naval opthalmic support and training activity is substantially equivalent to the education requirements for licensure as a spectacle dispensing optician.
(b) Military primary specialties.
(i) Army: optical laboratory specialist (MOS-6th);
(ii) Navy: optician (HM-8463); or,
(iii) Air force: optometry (4V0X1).
(c) Lengths of service.
The applicants will have met the experience requirements for licensure if the applicant has completed the training program listed in paragraph (B)(1)(a)(i) of this rule and has served for a minimum of eighteen months in one of the military specialties listed in paragraph (B)(1)(b) of this rule.
(a) Military programs of training.
There are no military programs of training that are substantially equivalent to or exceed the education and experience requirements for licensure as an ocularist.
(b) Lengths of service.
There are no minimal lengths of service that would be substantially equivalent to or exceed the educational and experience requirements for licensure as an ocularist.
(C) Application process.
(1) All applications for initial licensure as a dispensing optician shall be submitted to the board in a form designated by the board.
(2) Each application will indicate if the applicant is a member, veteran or spouse of a member or a spouse of a veteran. Applications indicating that the applicant is a member or a veteran or a spouse of a member or veteran will be processed with priority status.
(3) Applications shall be:
(a) Accompanied by the non-refundable fee in a form established by the board; and,
(b) Accompanied by such evidence, statements, or documents as specified on the application form.
(4) Each applicant will have successfully completed the state board national qualifying examination for the spectacle dispensing license. Said application for licensure shall be made within thirty-six months from the date of the examination that the applicant successfully completed for the spectacle license.
(5) In addition to the requirements of this rule, all applicants for licensure as a dispensing optician shall submit to a criminal records check completed by the bureau of criminal identification and investigation in accordance with section 4725.501 of the Revised Code. The results of the criminal records check shall be received by the board prior to the issuance of a license to practice as a dispensing optician. In accordance with this rule the applicant requesting the criminal records check shall:
(a) Provide the bureau of criminal identification and investigation with the applicant's name and address and with the name and address for the Ohio optical dispensers board; and,
(b) Ask the superintendent of the bureau of criminal identification and investigation to obtain from the federal bureau of investigation any information it has pertaining to the applicant.
(6) A criminal records check will not be required if the applicant has caused the results of a criminal records check to be filed with the board in accordance with the requirements of this rule within six months of the date that the board received the results of the criminal records check. A new criminal records check will be required if the applicant's criminal records check on file with the board is greater than six months old based on the date the board received the report.
(7) If an application for licensure submitted to the board remains incomplete for one year, the application shall be considered void. All applications provided or prescribed by the board shall state this limitation.
(8) The board will only accept the results of a criminal records check that is submitted to the board directly by the bureau of criminal identification and investigation.
(9) The appropriate license and wall certificate shall be issued by the board no later than thirty days after approval by the board.
(10) The board's licensing system will maintain records that will allow the board to track and monitor applications that have been submitted by a member, veteran or the spouse or surviving spouse of a member or veteran.
(D) Licensure renewal.
(1) In accordance with section 5903.12 of the Revised Code, the provisions of this paragraph apply to a licensee who has been a member of the armed forces of the United States and who has served on active duty for a period in excess of thirty-one days.
(2) A licensee who meets the provisions contained in paragraph (D) (1) of this rule may submit an application to the board requesting an extension of the current continuing education reporting period.
(a) The licensee shall submit proper documentation satisfactory to the board certifying the active duty service and the length of that active duty service.
(b) Upon receiving the application and proper documentation, the board shall extend the current continuing education reporting period by an amount of time equal to the total number of months that the licensee spent on active duty during the current continuing education reporting period. Any portion of a month served shall be considered one full month.
(c) The board shall consider relevant education, training, or service completed by a licensee as a member of the armed forces when determining whether a licensee has fulfilled required continuing education.
(3) A holder of an expired license to practice as a dispensing optician or ocularist shall be granted a renewal of the license by the board at the usual cost without penalty and without re-examination if not otherwise disqualified because of mental or physical disability and if either of the follow applies:
(a) The license was not renewed because of the holder's service in the armed forces; or,
(b) The license was not renewed because the holder's spouse served in the armed forces or a reserve component of the armed forces and the service resulted in the holder's absence from this state.
(4) A renewal shall not be granted unless the holder or the holder's spouse, whichever is applicable, has presented satisfactory evidence as described in paragraph (A)(3) of this rule of the service member's discharge under honorable conditions or release under honorable conditions from active duty or national guard duty within six months after the discharge or release.