Regulation

Florida Leads the Way on 2020 Occupational Licensing Reforms 

House Bill 1193 loosened or abolished rules governing more than 30 different professions.

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Occupational licensing reform had another big, bipartisan year in state capitols—but no state cut more red tape than Florida. On the last day of June, Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican, signed the most sweeping occupational licensing reform bill in modern U.S. history. House Bill 1193 loosened or abolished rules governing more than 30 different professions, including cosmetologists, interior designers, and boxing referees. Once the law is in effect, thousands of Floridians will no longer have to jump through bureaucratic hoops in order to earn a living.

They won't have to fear the licensing cops either. In 2017, Heather Kokesch Del Castillo was threatened with hundreds of dollars in fines and up to a year in prison when Florida bureaucrats busted her for the crime of giving dietary advice without a license. Florida's new law specifies that people may provide "information…or advice concerning nutrition" without a license as long as they don't advertise themselves as medical professionals and as long as the services are not offered to individuals under the direct care of a physician.

The same law also allows barbers and cosmetologists licensed in other states to move to Florida and immediately get to work without going through a lengthy and unnecessary relicensing process. The previous requirement served no purpose other than limiting competition, since barbers do not forget how to safely cut hair when they move across state lines. Thankfully, these "reciprocation" reforms are growing in popularity.

The bill also repealed the occupational licensing requirement for interior designers. Florida had been "one of only six states to license the occupation," the Institute for Justice, which in 2009 sued over the requirement, said in a press release. "The required license has been replaced with a simpler registration requirement that allows registrants to offer more services."

Florida isn't alone. On July 6, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) signed into law a measure allowing workers with an out-of-state license in more than a dozen professions to obtain Missouri's equivalent without starting from scratch. Meanwhile, Pennsylvania's Republican-controlled legislature passed and Gov. Tom Wolf (D) signed a bill that strikes down the state's vague "good character" provisions that often blocked people with criminal records from getting permission to work. Under the new law, licensing boards will be able to block applicants who have been convicted of crimes related to the field in which they wish to work, but they won't be able to use irrelevant offenses from many years ago as justifications for denying licenses.

Even after the recent spate of bipartisan licensing reforms, many unnecessary, onerous rules are still on the books across the country. State lawmakers everywhere should aim to match—or exceed—Florida's example.

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Regulation Occupational Licensing Reform Florida

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40 responses to “Florida Leads the Way on 2020 Occupational Licensing Reforms 

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  2. It’s good to see states going in the right direction on this.

    1. I quit working at shoprite and now I make $65-85 per/h. How? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new… after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn’t be happier.

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  3. We need alot more oof this

  4. Awesome. Florida living up to its “free state” reputation once again. And it should be kept that way, and advertised along with other free states, because this encourages likeminded people to go there. Yes, even libertarians enjoy having libertarians around. It fills you with optimism, and it makes us a political force to be reckoned with, like those antifa punks in Portland. And it also serves the purpose of not letting Progressives and Common-Good Conservatives take these relatively free places over and trash them.

    So, homeboys of liberty, if you’re looking to move, please consider Miami, Nashville, or Manchester! If enough libertarians make it known they want to flock to a particular city, I will make my arrangements to move there. Honest to goodness! I was already considering Manchester, Miami, or Vegas for a while.

    1. I only worry about the influx of folks to FL from blue states fleeing taxes etc. But not leaving their politics behind.

      1. For good reason. A recent CA transplant blames Rs for why CA is so bad. Given that state is definitionally one party rule.

        I think DeSantis has been a cut above our last 3 governors.

    2. Last year the governer of NH, the original free state, vetoed the creation of a commission to investigate the necessity of oiur licensing laws. Good news for people hwho like humidity, I guess.

      1. What was his rationale?

    3. Yes, and it’s encouraging that both legislation and voter initiatives in Florida in recent years have achieved deregulatory changes.

      1. Unfortunately Fla. is also the first and as far as I know only state that has licensing of cosmetics (which basically includes toiletries) manufacture. It’s cut the bottom rung off the latter of people who start as hobbyists making their own shampoos, bubble baths, and lotions, and then decide to take a fly at selling some to see if they can make it in that business. It does have a carve-out for soap, i.e. actual-soap soap, which is probably the biggest chunk of that sort of enterprise, but a lot of little guys like that get started in soap and then want to branch out into lipstick, bath oil, etc. Then they need to have a separate, inspectable facility that’s not in a residence; fortunately there’s no required pre-clearance of formulas for toxicity as there is now in the EU.

        But when you look at the gains in occupational licensing, ballot access, medical marijuana, and a few things I’ve forgotten, Fla. overall is looking good.

    4. “homeboys of liberty”

      you fucking loser

      1. This loser gonna outbreed you, bastard! I got a lot of good stuff (genetically), a lot of pro-capitalism stuff. And my kind will dominate your kind in future generations.

  5. “On the last day of June, Gov. Ron DeSantis, a Republican”

    Fine, maybe this guy did one thing right. But — in sharp contrast to Andrew Cuomo — he’s been absolutely terrible at dealing with the #TrumpVirus. I read that Florida has actually had the worst pandemic response in the country.

    #ILoveScience

    1. And the US has had the worst response in the world according to a poll I saw.

    2. Cuomo? The guy who murdered old people in nursing homes? Really?

    3. Please explain how New York’s death rate of 170 per 100,000 is better than Florida’s 61 per 100,000.

      But of course, left wingers in the Democrat party and the news media have claimed that DeSantos (and R governors in AZ, TX, SD and other states with much lower death rates than NY) have handled the China virus much worse than Cuomo and other D Govs in NJ, PA, CT, RI, MI, etc).

  6. Not to worry.
    After the democratic revolution of 2021, all work will be totally regulated and controlled to assure the proper assignments are made so that ALL jobs are accurately represented in all 1138 categories of race, genders (real and assumed), belief systems, etc. Except for pro sports, where certain race will be allowed to continue to dominate in order that gambling taxes will continue to supplement the confiscation of properties.

    1. Not according to the picture Reason used to accompany this story. So the black man is the regulation holding back the white man? That seems pretty racist, Boehm.

  7. The bill also repealed the occupational licensing requirement for interior designers.
    DIY home ‘improvements’ gone horribly wrong
    We need licensed interior designers to save us from ourselves.

    1. I absolutely love that Instagram account. I think I stayed up to 2am going through the posts.

  8. BFD. Report back when they get rid of teaching licenses.

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  12. I sure hope they keep the licensing requirements for doctors.

    1. There are CE and UL codes on appliances that meet industry safety requirements. Halal and Kosher markings on foods that meet religion requirements. None of those are government markings.

      Doctors can already opt-in to board certified testing and advertise their status in professional trade groups. Their medical degrees come from university, not the state. Why do we need government to “license” doctors, when there are private sector solutions to assure they meet minimum standards?

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  16. “House Bill 1193 loosened or abolished rules governing more than 30 different professions, including cosmetologists, interior designers, and boxing referees.”

    Once there were only 5 professions:
    Doctor
    Engineer
    Architect
    Lawyer
    Accountant.

    Now we have profession inflation. Everyone wants to be a professional.

    1. Just meeting market demand.