Gov. Doug Ducey has won at least a preliminary victory in his bid to cut state regulations.
On a 5-3 vote Wednesday, the House Commerce Committee agreed to end state licensure of geologists, landscape architects, assayers, fruit and vegetable packers and those who operate free-standing crematories.
And just for good measure, Rep. Warren Petersen, R-Gilbert, added language to deregulate courses that teach people how to become yoga instructors.
HB 2613, crafted by the governor’s office, is the first step in plans announced by Ducey during his State of the State address last month to not only curb state regulations but to scrap some state oversight entirely.
“Arizona requires licenses for too many jobs, resulting in a maze of bureaucracy for small business people looking to earn an honest living,” the governor said.
“Believe it or not, the state of Arizona actually licenses talent agents,” he said. “Let’s leave the job of finding new talent to (“The Voice” hosts) Adam Levine and Gwen Stefani, not state government.
Gubernatorial lobbyist Rene Guillen pointed to those comments Wednesday when he spoke to lawmakers in favor of the measure.
“Licensing should be the last option, not the first,” he said.
“We should periodically review the status quo and see if current regulations reach the proper balance of employment opportunity and government oversight,” Guillen said. “Reducing regulations means more money for hard-working Arizonans.”
Not everyone agrees.
Stephen Noel, a registered geologist, said these are “technical, scientific disciplines,” which require qualified people to perform the tasks. In fact, he argued, even state agencies that hire geologists, like the Department of Environmental Quality, require they be state certified.
Petersen said a third of states do not regulate geologists. Noel’s response was “they have problems.”
Shelly Tunis of the Yuma Fruit and Vegetable Association, said state regulation helps protect food safety. She said regulation of firms that hire the people who pick produce requires that they train their workers and ensures that if there is some sort of outbreak of disease it can be traced back to a source. Continue reading >>