Georgia veterinary loan repayment laws

May 2011

20-3-518.1.

As used in this part, the term:
(1) 'Board' means the State Veterinary Education Board created under Code Section 20-3-518.2.
(2) 'Commissioner' means the Commissioner of Agriculture.
(3) 'Department' means the Department of Agriculture.

20-3-518.2.

(a) There shall be a State Veterinary Education Board which shall consist of:
(1) The Commissioner of Agriculture or his or her designee;
(2) The dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Georgia or his or her designee;
(3) The dean of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences of the University of Georgia or his or her designee;
(4) A person actively engaged in the production of livestock in this state, to be appointed by the Governor, who shall serve for a term of four years and until his or her successor is qualified and appointed. The term of the initial member appointed under this paragraph shall commence on the effective date of this part; and
(5) A person actively engaged in the private practice of veterinary medicine in this state, whose practice includes but is not necessarily limited to food animals, to be appointed by the State Board of Veterinary Medicine, who shall serve for a term of four years and until his or her successor is qualified and appointed. The term of the initial member appointed under this paragraph shall commence on the effective date of this part.
(b) Any vacancies on the board shall be filled in the same manner as the original appointment.
(c) The board shall elect annually a chairperson and a vice chairperson to serve in the absence or inability of the chairperson. The board shall meet at least once each year at such time and place as may be fixed by the board. Special meetings shall be held upon the call of the chairperson. Three members of the board shall constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. No official action shall be taken by the board except upon the affirmative vote of at least three members of the board.
(d) The board shall be attached to the Department of Agriculture for administrative purposes only, pursuant to Code Section 50-4-3.

20-3-518.3.

(a) The board may provide for the purchase of loans made to students who are residents of Georgia for educational purposes who have completed a program of study in the field of doctor of veterinary medicine or its equivalent and are authorized to practice veterinary medicine in this state, with services in the form of the practice of veterinary medicine while residing in this state to be rendered as consideration for such loan purchases.
(b) Only persons whose veterinary medicine practices in this state include food animal specialties shall be eligible for loan purchases under this part.

20-3-518.4.

(a)(1) Persons whose applications are approved and enter into a loan purchase agreement with the board shall receive a loan purchase in a total amount to be determined by the board, but not exceeding $80,000.00 per person, as provided by Code Section 20-3-518.3. The loan purchases shall be paid in such manner as the board shall determine.
(2) The loan purchases to be granted to each applicant shall be based upon the condition that the consideration for such loan purchases shall be services to be rendered by the applicant after entering into a loan purchase agreement with the board by practicing his or her profession in a board approved rural county in Georgia with a population of 35,000 or less according to the United States decennial census of 2010 or any future such census.
(3) For time served after entering into a loan purchase agreement with the board in practicing his or her profession in such board approved location, the applicant shall receive a loan purchase at a rate equivalent to $20,000.00 per 12 months of service; provided, however, that the total purchase amount shall not exceed the maximum specified in paragraph (1) of this subsection.
(b) The board shall not enter into new loan purchase agreements with more than five persons per year; provided, however, that the total sum of loan purchases from state appropriations for which the board contractually obligates itself in any fiscal year shall not exceed the amount of funds for such loan purchase purposes specified in annual appropriations Acts. Funds in the loan purchase fund account that are not expended or contractually obligated by the board for loan purchases during any fiscal year shall lapse.

20-3-518.5.

(a) Each applicant before being granted a loan purchase shall enter into a contract with the board agreeing to the terms and conditions upon which the loan purchase is granted, including such terms and provisions as will carry out the full purpose and intent of this part. The form of such contract shall be prepared and approved by the Attorney General, and each contract shall be signed by the chairperson of the board and by the applicant.
(b) The board shall have the authority to cancel the loan purchase contract of any applicant at any time for any cause deemed sufficient by the board, provided that such authority shall not be arbitrarily or unreasonably exercised.

20-3-518.6.

The funds necessary for the loan purchases provided for by this part and to administer the terms of this part shall come from funds made available to the board from appropriations for such purpose. There shall be no compensation to board members for attending meetings or travel in the performance of their official duties.

20-3-518.7.

The board shall adopt such rules and regulations as are reasonable and necessary to implement this part."


Source: AVMA Staff Research, State Legislative and Regulatory Affairs Dept.
Contact: Tara Southwell, State Policy Analyst, AVMA State Legislative and Regulatory Department, 847-285-6779