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Thread: Arizona bill would kill licensing requirements for a host of professionals, from yoga instruct

  1. #1

    Arizona bill would kill licensing requirements for a host of professionals, from yoga instruct

    Todd Briggs is at the height of his career as a landscape architect.

    After years at a larger firm, he started his own business. He has challenging projects, including one to redesign a portion of the banks of the Rio Salado, and another to create a comfortable space where students at an Arizona State University dorm can socialize and study.

    But he fears his career in Arizona may now be in jeopardy.

    Lawmakers are advancing House Bill 2613, a proposal by Gov. Doug Ducey, to abolish state licenses for landscape architects, food-packing contractors, geologists, driving-school teachers, yoga instructors and assayers, who test materials to determine their pureness. The legislation also repeals licensing for people who do cremations.

    Ducey has vowed to make it easier to enter the workforce, saying licenses are required for too many jobs, stifling competition and job growth. The licensing requirements have created a “maze of bureaucracy for small-business people looking to earn an honest living," he said in his State of the State address.

    But critics say licenses were required for a reason: to ensure those who identify themselves as professionals have met minimum industry standards, and to protect consumers from unscrupulous operators.

    Without state licenses, Briggs said, landscape architects licensed in other states could gobble up Arizona contracts. Contracts with state and local governments could be threatened because the agreements require state licensing, which also is a requirement for liability insurance, he said.

    "The licenses ensure we meet a minimum requirement for safety," said Briggs, of central Phoenix. "That's why we are licensed. We have an educational background, an experienced background and we've been able to prove through licensure that we understand all the dynamics related to safety."

    HB 2613 would also direct the Department of Administration to study transferring state regulatory boards — except those that affect health-related professions — to a new division with the Department of Administration. Currently, many of the boards operate independently and Ducey staffers say they've discovered duplicative and questionable expenses.

    The bill is advancing through the state Legislature over the protests of dozens who packed a hearing room at the state Capitol this month, with one exception: Yoga instructors are supporting it. No driving instructors or their representatives have spoken for or against the bill.

    Those opposed to the legislation have warned de-licensing could expose the public to unscrupulous workers and unsafe public spaces. They also argue it could create problems for Arizona businesses that rely on state licensing to work on projects in other states, and for insurance.

    It could jeopardize food safety, said Shelly Tunis, who represents the Yuma Fresh Vegetable Association.

    Arizona is the second-largest producer of lettuce and leafy greens in the U.S., producing and shipping 3.4 billion pounds of fruits and vegetables last year, according to the Citrus, Fruit and Vegetable Advisory Council, which is urging Ducey to keep requirements for packer licenses in place.


    But Rep. Warren Petersen, R-Gilbert, who introduced the legislation, argued licensed professionals in those fields, and any other, can still be dishonest or unskilled. If problems arise, he said, they can be settled through civil court proceedings. Unhappy customers could also write reviews on popular sites such as Yelp or Angie's List.

    Petersen explained the legislation requires those who want to use titles or insignia to tout professional services would still have to meet certain criteria. They would have to have a certificate of qualification from a national bureau of registration or certification or a degree from an accredited institution in the field.

    "This is not like it's going from level 10 regulation to level 0 regulation. We're dialing it down," Petersen told the crowd. "There's laws on the books. You break laws on the books, a court will punish you. If you break a criminal law, a police officer is going to arrest you. So, I mean, it's not like there's no recourse whatsoever. Plus, you have your free-market recourse, which are: Bad people go out of business. Bad people get sued. Bad people have liability."

    Petersen said professionals who say they need Arizona licenses to qualify for projects outside of Arizona can apply for licenses from those states instead of Arizona's Board of Technical Registration.

    That board licenses a variety of professions, including engineers, architects and land surveyors. The executive director of the board said 912 landscape architects, 1,057 geologists and 24 assayers were licensed as of February. Arizona is the only state to license assayers.
    Quote Originally Posted by Ron Paul View Post
    The intellectual battle for liberty can appear to be a lonely one at times. However, the numbers are not as important as the principles that we hold. Leonard Read always taught that "it's not a numbers game, but an ideological game." That's why it's important to continue to provide a principled philosophy as to what the role of government ought to be, despite the numbers that stare us in the face.
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  3. #2
    Less government is never wrong.

    I'd rather see 'em start cutting the "Just-Us" departments first though........

  4. #3
    this is huge. glad to see someone take up the issue. every state should follow and clean house on "government permission to work"

    'We endorse the idea of voluntarism; self-responsibility: Family, friends, and churches to solve problems, rather than saying that some monolithic government is going to make you take care of yourself and be a better person. It's a preposterous notion: It never worked, it never will. The government can't make you a better person; it can't make you follow good habits.' - Ron Paul 1988

    Awareness is the Root of Liberation Revolution is Action upon Revelation

    'Resistance and Disobedience in Economic Activity is the Most Moral Human Action Possible' - SEK3

    Flectere si nequeo superos, Acheronta movebo.

    ...the familiar ritual of institutional self-absolution...
    ...for protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment...

  5. #4
    Reminds me of the story here in Phoenix where Salons would offer a service where women could come in and soak there feet in a tub filled with fish that would 'eat' the dead skin off your feet, leaving your feet smoother and healthier. All of these salons were shut down by the State Board of Cosmetology (we seriously have a freaking board of cosmetology!) despite the fact that there were ZERO complaints from customers and ZERO health violations.

    Good for AZ! Less government is always the way.
    There are only two things we should fight for. One is the defense of our homes and the other is the Bill of Rights. War for any other reason is simply a racket.
    -Major General Smedley Butler, USMC,
    Two-Time Congressional Medal of Honor Winner
    Author of, War is a Racket!

    It is not that I am mad, it is only that my head is different from yours.
    - Diogenes of Sinope

  6. #5
    Like a broken clock, the clowns in my home state get it right on occasion.
    Quote Originally Posted by Torchbearer
    what works can never be discussed online. there is only one language the government understands, and until the people start speaking it by the magazine full... things will remain the same.
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