Alarm bells are sounding around the country regarding proposed reform legislation affecting occupational licensing. While the spirit of these bills may be to protect public interests, the reality is that the language used often models anti-occupational licensing or anti-certification themes sponsored or endorsed by special interest groups. The concern has become so prevalent that the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and the Institute of Credentialing Excellence (ICE) have formed the Professional Certification Coalition. The coalition is an alliance designed to monitor current and pending legislation before various state legislatures regulate licensing boards and to ensure they consider the interests of the association and private credentialing community.
Why Change Now?
The restrictive new rules and regulations around occupational licensing that legislators are now actively proposing are in reaction to the 2014 U.S. Supreme Court decision in the “North Carolina State Board of Dental Examiners v. Federal Trade Commission” case. It established a new standard for determining whether a state licensing board is entitled to immunity from antitrust actions. In layman’s terms, it means that states are open to possible legal exposure in cases where licensing boards are claimed to be behaving in a non-competitive manner (read anti-trust) and the boards are made up primarily of “active participants.” While this trend toward increased oversight of licensing boards may seem innocuous, it can potentially have a significant impact on voluntary professional certifications that are not directly requiring licensure.
Long Term Implications
One such example of this impact came about a month ago. The Louisiana House of Delegates passed Louisiana House Bill 748, which banned the use of the term “certification” issued by professional credentialing organizations unless such certification is used in conjunction with licensure. Enforcement of this Bill would potentially invalidate numerous certifications earned by professionals. With the help of ICE and other lobbying efforts, Louisiana House Bill 748 was amended to address the concerns of the credentialing community. The concerning language regarding the use of the term “certified” was deleted entirely by amendment, and a subsequent amendment then deleted most of the bill.
Start the Conversation
We’d like to invite you to start the discussion with us around what associations and credentialing organizations can be doing to:
- Ensure your specific programs are not threatened by this new trend in the regulation of the labor market; and
- Help you learn ways to monitor and affect current and pending legislation that may have a negative impact on your certification programs and your mission.
Altai will be exhibiting at Booth 49 at the upcoming ICE Exchange on November 6-8th, and we welcome the opportunity to discuss this and other topics affecting the operations of your organization. Altai Systems and Microsoft are committed to delivering the best credentialing cloud platform based on the Microsoft Business Platform. We allow you to focus on credentialing while we focus on the technology and make sure you are on a platform that can fulfill all your current and future needs at an affordable cost.
We are committed to providing the technology, software, and business intelligence tools to enable certifying organizations to maintain the integrity of your certification programs and conform to the highest standards like the ICE 1100 and NCCA Accreditations and the ISO 17024 standard. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a time talk more about this important topic.