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Laws: Administrative Agencies Practice Act

In this chapter, unless the context or subject matter otherwise provides:
 
1. "Adjudicative proceeding" means an administrative matter resulting in an agency issuing an order after an opportunity for hearing is provided or required. An adjudicative proceeding includes administrative matters involving a hearing on a complaint against a specific-named respondent; a hearing on an application seeking a right, privilege, or an authorization from an agency, such as a ratemaking or licensing hearing; or a hearing on an appeal to an agency. An adjudicative proceeding includes reconsideration, rehearing, or reopening. Once an adjudicative proceeding has begun, the adjudicative proceeding includes any informal disposition of the administrative matter under section 28-32-22 or another specific statute or rule, unless the matter has been specifically converted to another type of proceeding under section 28-32-22. An adjudicative proceeding does not include a decision or order to file or not to file a complaint, or to initiate an investigation, an adjudicative proceeding, or any other proceeding before the agency, or another agency, or a court. An adjudicative proceeding does not include a decision or order to issue, reconsider, or reopen an order that precedes an opportunity for hearing or that under another section of this code is not subject to review in an adjudicative proceeding. An adjudicative proceeding does not include rulemaking under this chapter.
 
2. "Administrative agency" or "agency" means each board, bureau, commission, department, or other administrative unit of the executive branch of state government, including one or more officers, employees, or other persons directly or indirectly purporting to act on behalf or under authority of the agency. An administrative unit located within or subordinate to an administrative agency must be treated as part of that agency to the extent it purports to exercise authority subject to this chapter. The term administrative agency does not include:
 
a. The office of management and budget except with respect to rules made under section 32-12.2-14, rules relating to conduct on the capitol grounds and in buildings located on the capitol grounds under section 54-21-18, rules relating to the classified service as authorized under section 54-44.3-07, and rules relating to state purchasing practices as required under section 54-44.4-04.
b. The adjutant general with respect to the department of emergency services.
c. The council on the arts.
d. The state auditor
e. The department of commerce with respect to the division of economic development and finance.
f. The dairy promotion commission.
g. The education factfinding commission.
h. The educational technology council.
i. The board of equalization.
j. The board of higher education.
k. The Indian affairs commission.
l. The industrial commission with respect to the activities of the Bank of North Dakota, North Dakota housing finance agency, public finance authority, North Dakota mill and elevator association, North Dakota farm finance agency, the North Dakota transmission authority, and the North Dakota pipeline authority. The department of corrections and rehabilitation except with respect to the activities of the division of adult services under chapter 54-23.4.
n. The pardon advisory board.
o. The parks and recreation department.
p. The parole board.
q. The state fair association.
r. The attorney general with respect to activities of the state toxicologist and the state crime laboratory.
s. The board of university and school lands except with respect to activities under chapter 47-30.1.
t. The administrative committee on veterans' affairs except with respect to rules relating to the supervision and government of the veterans' home and the implementation of programs or services provided by the veterans' home.
u. The industrial commission with respect to the lignite research fund except as required under section 57-61-01.5.
v. The attorney general with respect to guidelines adopted under section 12.1-32-15 for the risk assessment of sexual offenders, the risk level review process, and public disclosure of information under section 12.1-32-15.
w. The commission on legal counsel for indigents.
x. The attorney general with respect to twenty-four seven sobriety program guidelines and program fees.
 
3. "Agency head" means an individual or body of individuals in whom the ultimate legal authority of the agency is vested by law.
 
4. "Complainant" means any person who files a complaint before an administrative agency pursuant to section 28-32-21 and any administrative agency that, when authorized by law, files such a complaint before such agency or any other agency.
 
5. "Hearing officer" means any agency head or one or more members of the agency head when presiding in an administrative proceeding, or, unless prohibited by law, one or more other persons designated by the agency head to preside in an administrative proceeding, an administrative law judge from the office of administrative hearings, or any other person duly assigned, appointed, or designated to preside in an administrative proceeding pursuant to statute or rule.
 
6. "License" means a franchise, permit, certification, approval, registration, charter, or similar form of authorization required by law.
 
7. "Order" means any agency action of particular applicability which determines the legal rights, duties, privileges, immunities, or other legal interests of one or more specific persons. The term does not include an executive order issued by the governor.
 
8. "Party" means each person named or admitted as a party or properly seeking and entitled as of right to be admitted as a party. An administrative agency may be a party. In a hearing for the suspension, revocation, or disqualification of an operator's license under title 39, the term may include each city and each county in which the alleged conduct occurred, but the city or county may not appeal the decision of the hearing officer.
 
9. "Person" includes an individual, association, partnership, corporation, limited liability company, state governmental agency or governmental subdivision, or an agency of such governmental subdivision.
 
10. "Relevant evidence" means evidence having any tendency to make the existence of any fact that is of consequence to the determination of the administrative action more probable or less probable than it would be without the evidence.
 
11. "Rule" means the whole or a part of an agency statement of general applicability which implements or prescribes law or policy or the organization, procedure, or practice requirements of the agency. The term includes the adoption of new rules and the amendment, repeal, or suspension of an existing rule. The term does not include:
 
a. A rule concerning only the internal management of an agency which does not directly or substantially affect the substantive or procedural rights or duties of any segment of the public.
b. A rule that sets forth criteria or guidelines to be used by the staff of an agency in the performance of audits, investigations, inspections, and settling commercial disputes or negotiating commercial arrangements, or in the defense, prosecution, or settlement of cases, if the disclosure of the statement would:
(1) Enable law violators to avoid detection;
(2) Facilitate disregard of requirements imposed by law; or
(3) Give a clearly improper advantage to persons who are in an adverse position to the state.
c. A rule establishing specific prices to be charged for particular goods or services sold by an agency.
d. A rule concerning only the physical servicing, maintenance, or care of agency-owned or agency-operated facilities or property.
e. A rule relating only to the use of a particular facility or property owned, operated, or maintained by the state or any of its subdivisions, if the substance of the rule is adequately indicated by means of signs or signals to persons who use the facility or property.
f. A rule concerning only inmates of a correctional or detention facility, students enrolled in an educational institution, or patients admitted to a hospital, if adopted by that facility, institution, or hospital.
g. A form whose contents or substantive requirements are prescribed by rule or statute or are instructions for the execution or use of the form.
h. An agency budget.
i. An opinion of the attorney general.
j. A rule adopted by an agency selection committee under section 54-44.7-03.
k. Any material, including a guideline, interpretive statement, statement of  general policy, manual, brochure, or pamphlet, which is explanatory and not intended to have the force and effect of law.