Section 108900. (Amended by Stats. 1997, Ch. 220, Sec. 27.)
Cite as: Cal. Health & Safety Code §108900.
(a) The department may impose a civil penalty payable to the department upon any person who violates this chapter or any regulation adopted pursuant to this chapter in the amount of not more than five thousand dollars ($5,000) per day. Each day a violation continues shall be considered a separate violation.
(b) If, after examination of a possible violation and the facts surrounding that possible violation, the department concludes that a violation has occurred, the department may issue a complaint to the person charged with the violation. The complaint shall allege the acts or failures to act that constitute the basis for the violation and the amount of the penalty. The complaint shall be served by personal service or by certified mail and shall inform the person so served of the right to a hearing.
(c) Any person served with a complaint pursuant to subdivision (c) may, within 20 days after service of the complaint, request a hearing by filing with the department a notice of defense. A notice of defense is deemed to have been filed within the 20-day period if it is postmarked within the 20-day period. If a hearing is requested by the person, it shall be conducted within 90 days after the receipt by the department of the notice of defense. If no notice of defense is filed within 20 days after service of the complaint, the department shall issue an order setting the penalty as proposed in the complaint unless the department and the person have entered into a settlement agreement, in that case the department shall issue an order setting the penalty in the amount specified in the settlement agreement. When the person has not filed a notice of defense or where the department and the person have entered into a settlement agreement, the order shall not be subject to review by any court or agency.
(d) Any hearing required under this section shall be conducted pursuant to Section 100171, except to the extent that the procedures specified in Section 100171 are inconsistent with this section.
(e) Orders setting civil penalties under this section shall become effective and final upon issuance thereof, and payment shall be made within 30 days of issuance. A copy of the order shall be served by personal service or by certified mail upon the person served with the complaint.
(f) Within 30 days after service of a copy of a decision issued by the director after a hearing, any person so served may file with the superior court a petition for writ of mandate for review of the decision. Any person who fails to file the petition within this 30-day period may not challenge the reasonableness or validity of the decision or order of the director in any judicial proceeding brought to enforce the decision or order or for other remedies. Section 1094.5 of the Code of Civil Procedure shall govern any proceedings conducted pursuant to this subdivision. In all proceedings pursuant to this subdivision, the court shall uphold the decision of the director if the decision is based upon substantial evidence in the whole record. The filing of a petition for writ of mandate shall not stay any corrective action required pursuant to this chapter or the accrual of any penalties assessed pursuant to this section. This subdivision does not prohibit the court from granting any appropriate relief within its jurisdiction.
(g) The remedies under this section are in addition to, and do not supersede or limit, any and all other remedies, civil or criminal.
(h) If the violation is committed after a previous imposition of a penalty under this section that has become final, if the violation is committed with intent to mislead or defraud, or if the violation concerns tableware primarily used by children or marketed for children, the person shall be subject to imprisonment for not more than one year in the county jail or imprisonment in state prison, by a fine of not more than ten thousand dollars ($10,000), or by both the imprisonment and fine.