Updates from ASLA

2018 State Licensure Mid-Year Report

ASLA’s government affairs team, chapters, and grassroots advocates have been vigilantly monitoring -- and defending against -- state legislative and regulatory licensure threats throughout the first half of 2018. During this time, approximately half of the states have waded into the licensure issue.

Promisingly, no legislative, executive, or regulatory actions have resulted in detrimental modifications to landscape architecture licensure.

The vast majority of state legislative and executive branch licensure activity has fallen into one of four reform categories. States have addressed licensure reform through proposals focused on interstate compacts for temporary licensure, “Right to Earn a Living” acts (or similar versions thereof), formal reviews of licensed occupations in the state, and the direct deregulation of occupations, including landscape architecture. Landscape architecture licensing was specifically threatened in Virginia and Arizona in 2018.

Virginia House Bill 555, as introduced, would have removed the licensure requirement for landscape architects and provided for optional certification. As a result of swift and intensive advocacy, the language deregulating landscape architecture was removed from the bill. Additionally, several weeks later an impromptu site visit between a VA ASLA advocate and the bill’s sponsor resulted in an apology from the legislator for his misunderstanding and targeting of the profession. Arizona House Bill 2410 also proposed the elimination of landscape architecture licensure. House Bill 2410 was never heard in committee and died upon adjournment.

Landscape Architecture licensing has also been endangered through formal occupational licensing sunset reviews. The Nevada Sunset Subcommittee of the Legislative Commission, through its normal business of reviewing occupational boards, scrutinized landscape architecture licensing and the landscape architecture board during several hearings this spring. Fortunately, the commission recommended continuation of landscape architecture licensing and the board. The commission’s recommendation for continuation will be forwarded to the Nevada state legislature for consideration during its 2019 session.

In an effort to continue to grow and improve upon ASLA’s defense efforts against licensure threats, ASLA chapters and CLARB boards will hold a joint Licensure Summit, June 22-24, in Columbus, Ohio.

This joint initiative will continue to build upon ASLA and CLARB efforts to improve licensure education and defense. The summit will include a discussion of the current trends in licensure, relationship building for Chapters and Boards, a focus on licensure messaging, developing and delivering testimony, a local project site tour with elected officials, and discussions by chapters and boards on best practices in licensure education and advocacy. Over 90 people representing chapters and boards from across the country will be attending. ASLA will have approximately 40 states represented.

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