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After Challenging Red Light Cameras, Oregon Man Fined $500 for Practicing Engineering Without a License

"Anyone should be allowed to talk about the traffic signals without being penalized," says Mats Järlström. He's suing the board.

Institute for JusticeInstitute for JusticeWhen Mats Järlström's wife got snagged by one of Oregon's red light cameras in 2013, he challenged the ticket by questioning the timing of the yellow lights at intersections where cameras had been installed.

Since then, his research into red light cameras has earned him attention in local and national media—in 2014, he presented his evidence on an episode of "60 Minutes"—and an invitation to present at last year's annual meeting of the Institute of Transportation Engineers.

It also got him a $500 fine from the Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying.

According to the board, Järlström's research into red light cameras and their effectiveness amounts to practicing engineering without a license. No, really. Järlström had sent a letter to the board in 2014 asking for the opportunity to present his research on how too-short yellow lights were making money for the state by putting the public's safety at risk. "I would like to present these fact for your review and comment," he wrote.

Instead of inviting him to present, the board threatened him. Citing state laws that make it illegal to practice engineering without a license, the board told Järlström that even calling himself an "electronics engineer" and the use of the phrase "I am an engineer" in his letter were enough to "create violations."

Apparently the threats weren't enough, because the board follow-up in January of this year by officially fining Järlström $500 for the supposed crime of "practicing engineering without being registered."

Järlström is now suing the state board over that fine, arguing that it's unconstitutional to prevent someone from doing math without the government's permission. He's getting support from the Institute for Justice, a national libertarian law firm.

"Criticizing the government's engineering isn't a crime; it's a constitutional right," said Sam Gedge, an attorney at the Institute for Justice, in a statement. "Under the First Amendment, you don't need to be a licensed lawyer to write an article critical of a Supreme Court decision, you don't need to be a licensed landscape architect to create a gardening blog, and you don't need to be a licensed engineer to talk about traffic lights."

The notion that it's somehow illegal for Järlström to call himself an engineer is absurd. He has a degree in electrical engineering from Sweden, worked as an airplane camera mechanic in the Swedish Air Force, and has worked in a variety of technical jobs since immigrating to the United States in 1992. In Oregon, though, all that matters is whether he has a state-issued license.

As crazy as Järlström's story is, it's not the first time the Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying has been overly aggressive about enforcing their rules for who is and who is not an engineer.

According to the lawsuit, the state board investigated Portland City Commissioner Dan Saltzman in 2014 for publishing a campaign pamphlet that mentioned Saltzman's background as an "environmental engineer." Saltzman has a bachelor's degree in environmental and civil engineering from Cornell University, a master's degree from MIT's School of Civil Engineering, and is a membership of the American Society of Civil Engineers.

What he isn't, though, is a licensed engineer in the state of Oregon.

According to Järlström's lawsuit, the board spent more than a year investigating Saltzman's background before voting to issue an official "warning" against using the word engineer incorrectly.

In another case, the state board investigated a Republican gubernatorial candidate for using the phrase "I'm an engineer and a problem-solver" in a campaign ad. The candidate in question, Allen Alley, had a degree in engineering from Purdue University and worked as an engineer for Boeing (and, of course, wasn't trying to lie about his lack of an Oregon-issued licensed but merely was making a freaking campaign ad), but

It doesn't stop there. In 2010, the state board issued a $1,000 fine for illegally practicing engineering to a local activist who told the La Pine, Oregon, city council that a proposed new power plant would be too loud for nearby residents.

The board once investigated Portland Monthly magazine for running a story that described a young immigrant woman as "an engineer behind Portland's newest bridge." The woman in the story did not describe herself as an engineer, but the magazine's editors included that description in the headline, the board concluded.

Järlström's lawsuit isn't seeking any monetary damages. He only wants a judicial order telling the state state board to stop violating the free speech rights of Oregonians.

"Anyone should be allowed to talk about the traffic signals—if they're too long or too short or anything—without being penalized," Järlström says.

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  • Zeb||

    Is this just an Oregon thing, or are there many states that license engineers? First I've heard of it. Engineering can be such a broad category of activity, I don't see how anyone who is creative and handy and likes solving problems could not be guilty.

  • Mickey Rat||

    As far as I am aware, professionally referring to yourself as an "engineer" is considered fraudulent in most states if you do not have an engineering license. If you are working in engineering and have only passed the Fundamentals Exam, you can only refer to yoursrlf as engineering intern.

    Though I think this is an improper application, as I do not think Jarlstrom was representing his work as a professional engineering study.

  • brokencycle||

    I have an engineering degree, but I never took the PE or FE exam. I have had job titles that included the word "Engineer," No one has fined me yet; maybe I'm just lucky.

  • Mickey Rat||

    I expect you work in an area that does not require a legally responsible person to sign off on engineering documents.

  • Tionico||

    matters not. He stil IS an engineer. If he has a degree, he IS one.

    Does he have the Mother May I Card for his state? Maybe, maybe not. But, funny thing, try writing that exam without already HAVING the degree required to hold the position. Things will not go well for you.

  • Some Engineer||

    You are not correct. Having an engineering degree does not make you an engineer.

  • Presskh||

    Sorry to correct you but I have been an Aerospace Engineer with the federal govt. for the past 34 years and only completed the EIT past my BS. That is my official US Government job classification. Whether or not you have to be licensed depends on the requirements of the state you live in. In my state, only civil engineers are required to have and maintain their PE. While it is true that it is more impressive to have your PE if you are going to work as an independent consultant, most large companies (and the federal govt.) could care less.

  • Long Woodchippers||

    So the one guy who was cited worked as an engineer in the state of Washington, but once he moved to Oregon he wasn't allowed to tell anyone about his previous work experience under penalty of law. Saying "I am/was an engineer" is not the same thing as being employed and actually building something.

  • brokencycle||

    I have an engineering degree, but I never took the PE or FE exam. I have had job titles that included the word "Engineer," No one has fined me yet; maybe I'm just lucky.

  • Some Engineer||

    You can work in industry engineering things and in most states this is simply not governed by the state licensure boards. The state boards are geared towards engineers who practice as Professional Engineers and provide engineering services to the public, mostly in the construction industry.

    The concept is that when the safety of people and property is affected that the designers carry a minimum level of education and experience, and that people cannot misrepresent themselves as Engineers if they do not in fact carry those qualifications.

    Sounds to me like the Oregon Board is way off the mark here. Criticism of a bridge or a building or a traffic light system isn't the practice of providing engineering services for public consumption.

  • Zeb||

    From what I can tell from a quick search, the licensing and credentials are only required to practice in certain areas where safety is a big concern. But civil engineering would fall under that, I guess. And that's what they are claiming this guy did.

    It struck me as odd since my job description includes the word "engineer", but I don't have any kind of official certification or even an engineering degree.

  • Hugh Akston||

    I think "sandwich engineer" is mostly a marketing ploy.

  • Zeb||

    You have obviously never seen the tragic results of a poorly engineered sandwich.

  • Ragoftag||

    McD's actually employs people in this capacity! Though not my choice, the Big Mac is subject to much tweeking and 'engineering'.

  • Gadfly||

    As someone who works in the field of civil engineering but does not have a license (yet), I can confirm that what this guy did is considered fraud in most states, as you cannot represent yourself as an engineer when presenting engineering information (and traffic studies fall under the broad category of the roadway discipline of civil engineering) unless you are officially licensed. However, this rule is rarely enforced (and often violated), usually only coming into consideration during lawsuits. The fact that they are dinging him for this is clearly retaliation, but he did violate the letter of the law and this law will not be overturned since fraud is not protected by the first amendment and there is no way the courts will prevent the state from running licensing schemes (which is what would be required to consider his actions something other than fraud).

  • SUPERHEAVYDOODY||

    fraud
    frôd/
    noun
    wrongful or criminal deception intended to result in financial or personal gain.
    "he was convicted of fraud"
    synonyms: fraudulence, cheating, swindling, embezzlement, deceit, deception, double-dealing, chicanery, sharp practice; More
    a person or thing intended to deceive others, typically by unjustifiably claiming or being credited with accomplishments or qualities.
    "mediums exposed as tricksters and frauds"
    synonyms: impostor, fake, sham, charlatan, quack, mountebank; swindler, gonif, snake oil salesman, fraudster, racketeer, cheat, confidence trickster; informalphony, con man, con artist, scam artist
    "they exposed him as a fraud"


    The gentleman in question did none of these things. So why the fine? Just more of the great logic of the state I call home....... Just wait till you hear about the parade that's been cancelled due to threats from anarchists. The issue? Republicans marching in the parade. Perhaps the Log Cabin R's should March instead.

  • Sigivald||

    It's not clear the statute criminalizes simply calling yourself a generic engineer in a context that does not imply "I mean a licensed professional engineer", which is the specific appellation it protects - and which claiming to be falsely would be fraud.

    That the State Board tries to use it that way is their problem, and frankly I support repealing that entire ORS section.

    In every other use, "engineer" includes things other than "licensed professional engineer", as much as Professional Snob Organizations wish it didn't.

    (Sorry, guys. That boat has sailed.

    A "software engineer" - the obvious example - just isn't an ME/CE/etc. And the existence of a FE exam from the NCEES doesn't make them one - it's plainly grafted onto the EE stuff and that made some sense ... in 1970, maybe.

    Looking at the spec for the computer/electronics FE test, ... there's one section on software.

    One section.

    But hey, you have to know how to design a CPU and do EM work, three-phase power, and vector analysis to be a "software engineer", right?

    No. Seriously. Can we just stop the nonsense already?)

  • R. K. Phillips||

    I agree. I was a software engineer for the DoD twenty years ago; I had no degree for that subject, but I did have ability. A license doesn't guarantee ability, in any case (our health care system avoidably kills a city's worth of people each year, and many of those involved have training and licenses.)

  • Some Engineer||

    If you write software you aren't an engineer. You are a programmer.

  • Tionico||

    except that he is NOT holding himself out to the public as one who performs these services for hire. Nor do others rely upon his research or conclustions in a way that his work must be "official". He is merely citing his background and experience and education/degree as an engineer to lend credence to the verity of his research and conclusions. The state boyz are merely knicker-knotted because he's right, and they are trying to discredit him.

    Any dummy can take a stopwatch, or, better yet, a cheap video camera with frame timelines, set it up at a suspicious intersection, and press "record". Now, once you have the recording showing the changing lights and such, it is a simple matter to put the recording into a free online video edit application and count the frames for each colour phase of the light. At thirty frames a second, the results will be unambiguous. THAT would be admissible as evidence in a court of law, IF the one who created the video stream were to testify as to how he did it, and clearly demonstrate the results. And someone go ahead and try and nail ME for playing lawyer.......

  • rxc||

    I am an engineer. Not a licensed professional engineer, but someone who has a degreee in chemical engineering, and 35 years of experience in designing, building, operating, licensing, and regulating nuclear power plants. However, here in Florida, when I get a chance to challenge the opinion by a PE in a court, the legal system says that his testimony MUST be accorded validity over mine, compared to my testimony, because he has the PE stamp.

    I used to work for the US govt, where I was in charge of a group of engineers (some with PE licenses) who evaluated work done by PEs from Westinghouse, GE, Excelon, TVA, etc. I have personally REJECTED work done by groups of credentialed PEs, which was utter bullshit. I have LAUGHED at PEs for the stuff that they presented to us for approval. I have told licensed PEs to get out of my office and GO AWAY, and never come back with half-baked ideas.

    PEs serve a useful purpose, because they give some assurance that the structure you build won't hurt anyone. But they are also subject to pressures from their clients to do things that they (should) know are wrong. This guy did the right thing. He is a REAL engineer. He evaluated the real situation and can explain and document his methods, results, and conclusions.

    The Oregon Board of Engineering Licensing should be ashamed of itself. They are a stain on the profession, for this sort of crap.

  • Oldcarman||

    He pulled their arrogant pants down to show the fraud they inflict on taxpayers and to show their importance and relative incompetence!

  • Paper Wasp||

    but he did violate the letter of the law and this law will not be overturned since fraud is not protected by the first amendment

    The fuck he did.

    He performed no services for money. He did not represent himself as an engineer to anyone from whom he was seeking remuneration/compensation for services or goods produced. He sought no compensation and received no benefit for what is nothing more than 1st-Amendment-protected, evidence-based criticism of government policy and intrusion.

    He used math skills acquired during his educational and career history (as an engineer, FFS) to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of government-installed red-light cameras. He formulated his findings as a critique of the government's actions. Americans have the right to critique their government; they can do it via math, they can do it via PowerPoint presentations; they can do it via essays or cartoons; they can do this via fucking interpretive dance if they feel like it.

  • bevis the lumberjack||

    I received an engineering degree in 1983 and never bothered to take the exam to become registered (or licensed, whatever you want to call it). Worked in private industry as an engineer and referred to myself as an engineer for 33 years without a problem. Among the engineers that I worked with through the years I'd guesstimate that maybe 10-20% bothered to take the exam to become registered.

    Generally, if you plan to testify in court as an expert or work on government/infrastructure projects you needed to get the license. Otherwise no big deal. I testified at hearings before my state's regulatory agency maybe 100 times as an engineer and an expert and my status was never questioned. It never came up.

  • MikeP2||

    "professionally referring to yourself as an "engineer" is considered fraudulent in most states if you do not have an engineering license."

    That is not true. I am a practicing professional engineer, but I have no license. I can refer to myself as an engineer in any state in the country. What I cannot do, is provide specific engineering services that are covered by State law.

    Oregon is crazy and legally effed up. Apparently no one has bothered enough to call them on it.

  • Mickey Rat||

    FL Statute 471.003 (1) "No person other than a duly licensed engineer shall practice engineering or use the name "licensed engineer" or "professional engineer", or any other title, designation, words, letters, abbreviations, or device tending to indicate that such person holds an active license as an engineer in this state."

    Again, it generally refers those types of engineering business that require legal documentation for code compliance. They generally let slide engineers that are not in such areas.

  • bevis the lumberjack||

    Do they define the word "engineering" or the phrase "practice engineering" somewhere else in the statute? Since 80% or more of degreed engineers don't bother with the test, they're going to have to build a lot more prisons. Better not cut back the H-1B program until this gets sorted out.

    And the dude in Oregon, as far as the stories go, didn't refer to himself as "licensed". In fact, what he did barely qualifies as "engineering". It's more like "simple math" with probably a little statistics thrown in.

  • MikeP2||

    Nice use of selective information. Love how you cut-n-paste one tiny bit of verbage from the statute, but ignore the page of exemptions to the rule.

  • Mickey Rat||

    You did read what I wrote after the quote, right?

  • jdd6y||

    There is a big difference between using the common word "engineer" to describe yourself and "licensed engineer" or "Professional Engineer." Those imply a state license. Arguably those laws are Constitutional abridgments of commercial speech, which is less protected.

    There is also a distinction between advertising or selling services (practicing) and petitioning your government, which is absolutely privileged in most instances. Any statement made to a government seeking redress should be protected under 1st Amendment. The content is immaterial unless it is a sham.

    Calling yourself, generally, an engineer because you have a degree, did engineering, or hold/held a license somewhere else or in another jurisdiction is not implying your are licensed. If you are not selling your services to anyone then you aren't practicing, you're just giving a free opinion.

  • BladdyK||

    Yes, but he never referred to himself as a licensed or professional engineer. I think you are misinterpreting the law.

  • Gadfly||

    Yeah, you actually can't unless you have a license, at least not if you are discussing anything that falls within the purview of one of the licensed disciplines (and civil engineering - including traffic - is one of the most strictly licensed fields of engineering there is). Now, they hardly ever call people on it, but it is technically fraud and if you make yourself visible to someone who cares (like, perhaps, a Board of Engineering) while committing fraud you are going to get slapped with a fine.

  • MikeP2||

    That is nonsense. "engineering" is an enormously diverse field with practicing engineers working in almost every field imaginable. The licensing activities refer to a very tiny piece of "engineering" practice.
    Anyone with a degree in engineering can call themselves an 'engineer', can practice any number of diverse fields of engineering in almost any state without issue.

  • Gadfly||

    So I guess you only read the first four words of my reply, as I specifically addressed your objection. You cannot call yourself an engineer when you are doing what technically qualifies as engineering work in a field in which licenses are required and in which you are not licensed. Civil engineering requires a license, road design (including signal timing) is technically civil engineering work, and this guy represented himself as engineer while discussing what is technically civil engineering to the board who determines who is and is not an engineer. The board is being unfair to him, but he is in technical violation of the rules and they have the authority to fine him for it. I guess since most other fields of engineering don't require licenses to do work that it makes sense that people assume anyone can call themselves and engineer, but this is only true for the unlicensed fields of engineering (which, to be fair, predominate).

  • MikeP2||

    "he is in technical violation of the rules "

    That is BS and you are being strangely obtuse in your reasoning. Oregon is intentionally misinterpreting the licensing law to suppress clear free speech rights. Anyone has the right to use a title that applies to them. It is only a violation to falsely represent yourself when practicing a specifically licensed activity. An engineer can publish a technical paper or professional assessment anywhere in the country and sign it, "John Smith, Engineer" if they have a degree in engineering. It is only, very narrowly, against licensing boards to sign/authorize the specific legal documents covered or to be employed as an engineer in an licenses requiring function.
    I am an engineer. I work as an engineer for a multinational company. I travel across the country working at regional sites and consulting at customer locations. I sign everything I do with my name and title (which says "engineer") I am free to do this because I have a degree in engineering. It is not fraud, nor illegal in any way shape or form. However, I cannot "sign off" on certain documents that are covered as licensed activities....that's it.

  • croaker||

    Agreed. This is SLAPP.

  • KBeckman||

    Honestly this article didn't even get into the real asinine parts of this.

    The board stated that his e-mail to the original maker of the original formula to determine the length of yellow lights was a violation. Discussing his findings with the public apparently was also a violation.

  • trev||

    ITS NOT TECHNICALLY FRAUD. Please look up the word fraud and understand legally what elements must be present for something to be a fraud. You keep using the word without understanding it's meaning.

  • CS, P.E.||

    Sec. 20-302. Requirements for licensure. No person shall practice or offer to practice the profession of engineering in any of its branches, including land surveying, or use any title or description tending to convey the impression that such person is a professional engineer or a land surveyor, unless such person has been licensed or is exempt under the provisions of this chapter. The following shall be considered as minimum evidence satisfactory to the board or Commissioner of Consumer Protection that the applicant is qualified for licensure as a professional engineer, engineer-in-training, land surveyor or surveyor-in-training, respectively:

    You cannot refer to yourself as an "engineer" as it implies you are licesed to provide engineering services. Send in a business card with Engineer as the title to the state board where you are and you will see I am correct on this one. Usually, most will get a "cease & desist" letter from the state board but if ignored, you would be fined and it is enforcable.

  • Elias Fakaname||

    You mean I have to throw away my new business cards that state I am an "orgasm engineer". That was 30 bucks well spent......

  • JParker||

    You cannot refer to yourself as an "engineer" as it implies you are licesed to provide engineering services. Send in a business card with Engineer as the title to the state board where you are and you will see I am correct on this one.

    Of course, anyone can refer to themselves as an "engineer". Now government employees may disagree and write documents that say one cannot, and in the case one who does so attempt to bully them into not doing so, but one can still freely do so. Also, someone who alleges that relying on some work product that depended on engineering by someone using this title may well bring it up in arbitration and/or court and be successful as a result; however even in this situation one may still refer to him or herself as an engineer.

  • geo||

    I have worked with hundreds of engineers who practiced engineering without a license from any state. There are only certain types of work and certification that require a license in MOST states and there are many exceptions, e.g. New Mexico does not require structural engineers to be licensed. Some of the best engineers I have ever known did not even have a college degree. Years ago it was still common to learn engineering on the job. I doubt that Google, Amazon, Apple, and dozens of the major employers of engineers do not have licensed engineers, nor do most engineers in the automotive industry, or most engineers in the oil and gas industry. Licensed engineers normally are not required outside of government projects or those that require some sort of government approval. I also know quite a few engineers who actually work for the government who are not licensed engineers. Out of several million engineers in the United States, only about 475,000 actually have a license. Even the US Army Corps of Engineers does not require many of its engineers to have a license.

  • timeconsumer||

    In the hotel industry there is an entire department called "Engineering" and the people who work within it are called "Engineers", that's what they put on their resume and nametag. None of them have engineering degrees, in fact I don't think I've met a single one who even went to college. One hotel I worked at the Director of Engineering was actually a high school dropout (and one of the smartest people I've ever met). They're maintenance guys, maybe a locksmith and an electrician mixed in. They paint walls, install carpet, fix the machines in the laundry that break 4 times a day, work on the HVAC, figure out why the entire kitchen keeps catching on fire, that kind of thing. But the entire hotel industry calls these guys Engineers. Nobody has fined them that I know of.

  • DaveSs||

    Its not unique to Oregon

    North Caroline does it too

  • Griffin3||

    What, no one drives trains in Oregon?

  • Devastator||

    Every state licenses certain types of engineers like civil engineers who design bridge and roads. I can't believe you have never heard of that before. I don't know of any state that says saying you're an engineer is illegal though, there are just certain jobs you can't do without a license.

  • Diane Merriam||

    When I was getting ready to graduate 30 years ago in Kentucky and intended to go self employed, several of my professors told me *not* to call myself an engineer and *not* to get a state license, but an analyst or a consultant or anything that didn't have engineer in the title because it would otherwise create an enormous liability risk. The title itself was the risk for exactly the same sort of reason that this person has run up against, so it's nothing new or unique to Oregon.

  • flyfishnevada||

    I'm pretty sure most states do. I was a licensed engineer. Licensing doesn't prevent you, in Nevada as far as I know, from calling yourself an engineer or performing engineering. It is meant only for doing so for hire and only for specific engineering disciplines. I can't hire myself out as a civil engineer, for instance, since that is one of those specific disciplines. But computer engineer? That's not specified and isn't engineering in the classical sense. Neither is domestic engineer, sanitation engineer or train engineer (though that last one might have its own requirements).

    And certainly, the licensing laws aren't meant to prevent citizens from performing "amateur" engineering for their personal use or even in situations like this one. In fact, most engineering isn't done by engineers. It's done by interns, those in training and technicians. Then an engineer stamps their work to certify it meets applicable standards and practices.

    I suspect Oregon isn't happy that they got caught being naughty and are using whatever means necessary to punish their foe.

  • timbo||

    Hey bureaucrats. F*ck you and your bullsh*t jobs!

    The worst part about a bureaucrat is that they know full well that their entire life is a total waste of time.

  • yet another dave||

    Meet ye'olde gubmint reach around Mats

  • yet another dave||

    btw, "ye'olde gubmint reach around was my nickname in highschool"

  • Crusty Juggler aka "Chad"||

    This one is too much for me.*

    *What is something Winston's mom has never said?

  • flatdarkmars||

    That is a two-umlaut man! You don't mess with a two-umlaut man.

  • albo||

    It's not like he's doing paid work for people as an engineer, right? He's not in business as one. Ridiculous

  • Ska||

    That is the tack I would take. He's not holding himself out as a practicing PE.

  • Mickey Rat||

    He dared to expose the local government's transportation engineering practices as corrupt. Of course they would twist the law to punish him for it.

  • Entropy Drehmaschine Void||

    When Kalifornia falls into the Pacific, can it take Oregon with it?

    Please?

  • You're Kidding||

    NO!

    I live in the People's Republic of CA and would love to see it all come to an end.

    (I think between Bezerkeley's lack of free speech and, BART's recent refusal to show the video of gangland terrorist (black no less) teens strong arm robbing helpless passengers (Asian and white) that the end is finally near.)

    But please don't throw the baby out with the bathwater. OR is a wonderful place and where I had planned to grow old until my current wife decided we couldn't move there and leave her daughter and granddaughter alone here in CA.

    (Is that grounds for divorce.)

    OR is just a bit screwed up in some ways. Like, you can't pump your own gasoline, it's against state law.

    (Interestingly enough, I ride a motorcycle in OR and the station attendants only take my credit card and swipe it through the pump and then hand me the fill nozzle because they have no idea where or how to fill my bike and are paranoid, as they should be, that if they mess up, I might be a little mad.)

    The world at large sees OR as blue state with leftist leanings. Friends here in CA see OR as a backwards, hillbilly state full of dangerous rednecks!

    I really don't care either way, as long as everyone stays out of OR and it doesn't get Californiacated....which is every Oregonian I've ever known's greatest fear!

  • techgump||

    A list of contact information for the Oregon Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying
    oregon(DOT)gov/Osbeels/Pages/contact_us.aspx

    osbeels@osbeels.org
    Phone: 503-362-2666
    Fax: 503-362-5454

    ​EXECUTIVES​
    Mari Lopez ​LopezM@osbeels.org 503-934-2108
    Je​nn Gilbert GilbertJ@osbeels.org 503-934-2107

    Here's what I sent the board in email:

    Shame on all of you involved in fining Mats Järlström $500 for speaking his mind, with facts no less. Clearly you're not capable of appropriately managing the undue powers you hold. I hope your actions lead to many, many others to learn about red light problems. And I hope you continue to violate guaranteed Constitutional Rights, as the mini-tyrants you're acting like, so as to continue waking more people up, like me, to your completely asinine, immoral actions that punish innocent people attempting to merely educate the public and propose possible better solutions. It's people like you that give Gov't a horrible name.

    You people are out of your minds. Shame, shame, shame!!

    And fuck you,

  • ||

    If you closed with that, you're my hero.

  • Gadfly||

    If you are going to write a letter like that, it's best to refrain from throwing out fictions that muddy your argument. They are in no way violating his constitutional rights, as fraud is not free speech, and this guy did technically commit fraud by attaching the title "engineer" to his assessment of a civil engineering situation. The board is clearly retaliating against him for making them look bad, but if the government is allowed to regulate careers (which they are) then they are empowered to define technical terms, like "engineer", and have the right to fine those who falsely represent themselves as engineers. If this guy hadn't referred to himself as an engineer they would have no grounds to punish him, and while it's understandable that he'd try to use his expertise in mathematics as an appeal to authority to bolster his case, it is unfortunate for him that he did not bother to research basic engineering practice before writing the board of engineers. If you are going to shoot the king, you best not miss. If you are going to take on the government, you better do your research first.

  • 10mm||

    Your argument would be true if the law was actually binary.
    With the amount of conflicting codes, laws and interpretations, research gets you nowhere against bureaucrats without a courtroom and good attorneys.

    Besides, he didn't falsely represent himself as an engineer as it is normally applied. This was a lie by the bureaucrats.

    And lastly, 'allowed to regulate careers' is complete and utter BS whether that is codified or not.

  • Ron||

    they still have no ground because he is an engineer just not in the field they approve of so he did not commit fraud. As far as I know electrical engineering in fields other than building wiring systems does not require a license.

  • jdd6y||

    I don't think you know what the definition of fraud, is. Did he misrepresent a material fact? Arguably no, but assume, yes. Did anyone rely on it? Doesn't sound like it. Did he intend anyone rely on his designation as an 'engineer' vs the observations and causal nexus? Was there an injury? Those are the elements of fraud.

    You're closer to practicing law without a license than this guy is to committing fraud.

  • marshaul||

    "You're closer to practicing law without a license than this guy is to committing fraud."

    That's probably the best ownage of a know-it-all armchair expert I've seen all week.

  • GroundTruth||

    I'm not so certain about this.

    If I am chatting with someone about a situation, and asking for information in a general sense, and know that person had studied engineering, then what I assume I'm getting is someone who is generally an engineer in outlook and knowledge.

    OTOH, if I've drawn up plans for an addition to my house (as I did), then before I submit them to the town for a permit (don't get me going on that...), I go to someone who has a license to practice engineering, and who will put his stamp on the plans.

    For this gent to be charged with a crime, he really would have had to have claimed to be a licensed engineer, wording that it does not seem that he used.

    Words have meanings, and combinations of words have meanings. A state can not grab a word in general usage and say "that word means only what we want it to, in all communications, all the time".

  • MikeP2||

    "For this gent to be charged with a crime, he really would have had to have claimed to be a licensed engineer, wording that it does not seem that he used."

    ^^^ this, and only this.

  • SUPERHEAVYDOODY||

    The man isn't doing a job(no one hired him.). Ergo he need not be a " licensed engineer ". Does he also need to take the bar exam to help his wife get out of a traffic summons? I suppose that will be the next fine.

  • You're Kidding||

    Excellent analogy!

  • trev||

    Political speech enjoys very broad protections. His speech is undeniably political since it concerns government policy. And is there is no way the government can regulate it. Commercial speech isn't the same. So you are wrong when you try to equate the two.

    You are even more wrong when your accuse him if committing fraud. Fraud requires an intent to deceive. And in addition you must deprive someone if something of value through your deception. Even in the case that he was selling his services as an engineer he still would but be committing fraud.

  • Jujucat||

    Don't miss the point by thinking bureaucratically. The point is the red lights and how they are a safety hazard.

  • Longtobefree||

    Do you have an Oregon license to write letters? Probably a Secretary's license, as they have not yet caught up to the point of "administrative assistant".

  • Jujucat||

    You've done a great service. I followed suit and emailed all three addresses you provided:

    To Whom It May Concern:
    You are acting incredibly childish regarding Mats Järlström. Seriously, you are the definition of "petty bureaucrats". Grow up, will ya?

    Not as cool as yours, but wanted to put in my 2 cents. ;)

  • techgump||

    A list of contact information for the Oregon Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying
    oregon(DOT)gov/Osbeels/Pages/contact_us.aspx

    osbeels@osbeels.org
    Phone: 503-362-2666
    Fax: 503-362-5454

    ​EXECUTIVES​
    Mari Lopez ​LopezM@osbeels.org 503-934-2108
    Je​nn Gilbert GilbertJ@osbeels.org 503-934-2107

    Here's what I sent the board in email:

    Shame on all of you involved in fining Mats Järlström $500 for speaking his mind, with facts no less. Clearly you're not capable of appropriately managing the undue powers you hold. I hope your actions lead to many, many others to learn about red light problems. And I hope you continue to violate guaranteed Constitutional Rights, as the mini-tyrants you're acting like, so as to continue waking more people up, like me, to your completely asinine, immoral actions that punish innocent people attempting to merely educate the public and propose possible better solutions. It's people like you that give Gov't a horrible name.

    You people are out of your minds. Shame, shame, shame!!

    And f**k you,

  • Zeb||

    Censorious squirrels now.

  • Rebel Scum||

    Citing state laws that make it illegal to practice engineering without a license

    Then how does any EIT (Engineer In Training) work ones way to becoming a licensed engineer? I'm an EIT now and I "practice engineering" on a daily basis. The only difference between me and a PE is that they can sign off on their own plans and I have to have a PE sign off on mine.

  • Mickey Rat||

    That is how. Legally speaking, the PE is performing the work, not you.

  • Sigivald||

    More accurately, in Oregon, it's not "the PE is performing the work", so much as the statute explicitly says "you don't need to be a PE to do engineering work under one".

    (The idea is that he's checking your work, but there's not even a legal fiction that he's doing the work.)

  • rxc||

    I used to check and approve (and reject) work done by PEs, in my job (nuclear reactor safety) with the US govt. I don't have a PE, but do have an eng degree and experience that qualified me for the job.

    This whole thing is emblamatic of the credentialism that is taking over our society. People don't realize that just because someone has a credential, they know what they are talking about.

  • Gadfly||

    As long as you call yourself an EIT and don't go around calling yourself an engineer, you are not "practicing engineering" in a technical sense. In a colloquial sense, sure, and in regular conversation it would make total sense to say you are practicing engineering and call yourself an engineer and for this guy to call himself an engineer. His only mistake was calling himself an engineer to the face of the people who regulate who is and is not an engineer (and doing so while criticizing them). The decent thing for the board to do would have been to ignore this petty instance of fraud, but one cannot count on decency when dealing with government officials.

  • Griffin3||

    I am an unlicensed software engineer. In fact, I have a degree in chemistry, but software engineering is my business. And business it GOOD.
    Oregon can just suck it.

  • PTSchram||

    I have a degree in Chemistry and one in Corporate Financial Management.

    I spent 19 years working as an Environmental, Health & Safety Compliance Engineer.

    I am constantly told I'm not an engineer because I don't have an engineering degree, but I'm a lot better engineer than I'll ever be chemist.

  • VicRattlehead||

    I'm an unlicensed electrical engineer in practice, i get around it by calling myself and electronics technical consultant, electrical techs do not need a license. he should just say hes offering technical consultation on a civil problem free of charge to improve public safety, leave all the engineers out of it since it seems like its a magic incantation that summons the government as the lawful evil slime it is.

  • Sigivald||

    "I'm sorry, you didn't take the PE exam and prove you know three-phase AC power. You can't be a real engineer even if you do software and everyone calls it engineering and you're really, really good at that!"

    The way the hardcore physical-realm engineers seem to think everything with the name "engineering" must be done their way is even more hilarious when you remember that "engineer" originally just meant "guy that drove a locomotive"; engineer - one who runs an engine. No licensing, no degrees, mostly seat-of-pants OJT.

    (I respect MEs and CEs, and have no objections at all to a properly-run licensure procedure for people building commercial buildings and roads [since we don't yet live in a world where people trust voluntary standards], or to requirements that only people who've got one call themselves licensed.

    I object to the idea they seem to have that the very word "engineer" is both holy and requires you be like an ME/CE/EE in every way.)

  • ||

    Good luck, Mr. Jarlstrom. What a bunch of dicks.

  • ||

    He got caught by the red light camera, so he can't go with Ninja, but that still leaves plenty of other descriptors-cum-titles like Guru, Savant, Wizard, Rock Star, Warrior, Genius, Infidel...

  • Fist of Etiquette||

    According to Järlström's lawsuit, the board spent more than a year investigating Saltzman's background...

    Sounds like they're inefficient at engineering an investigation.

    The board probably shouldn't be challenging an engineer who already has shown a penchant for litigation. That's a bad combination in a foe.

  • Stoneman||

    Ha! Mat has a huge case. Oregon is going to have to pay Big Time! Good luck Mat. Go getem!

  • Stoneman||

    Ha! Mat has a huge case. Oregon is going to have to pay Big Time! Good luck Mat. Go getem!

  • Stormy Dragon||

    I think E. O. Wilson's comment about Marxism only working if people were ants, "Wonderful theory, wrong species." applies to libertarianism too. Perhaps if mankind we evolved from a solitary species like tigers, libertarianism would work. But as it is, we're evolved from a species with a deep seated need to boss around our social inferiors and a deep seated desire to be bossed around by our social superiors.

    While these instincts can be overcome through concerted effort, must people are lazy and are perfectly happy to just go along with them. Even most self-proclaimed libertarians are really just upset they're not higher up in the hierarchy, not actually against the hierarchy per se.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    Whoops, wrong comment thread.

  • You're Kidding||

    Interesting none-the-less.

    I would argue that, people are not as social as we are commonly thought to be. Just check out the debates here on this forum.

  • ||

    Meanwhile you've got engineers running around claiming to be scientists. And these think they're lawyers.

  • Stormy Dragon||

    People often assume scientists and engineers are similar because they both use science and math, when really they are, despite some superficial similarities, actually the opposite of each other.

    A scientist is concerned with studying the unknown to expand the bounds of knowledge. To them, the unknown is exciting because it is what causes research to succeed.

    An engineer is concerned with studying the known and using it to solve problems. To them, the unknown is terrible because it is what causes designs to fail.

  • MikeP2||

    There are research engineers aplenty. There are non-researching scientists aplenty. The venn-diagram overlaps significantly.

    Your definition is a bit silly.

  • MikeP2||

    There are research engineers aplenty. There are non-researching scientists aplenty. The venn-diagram overlaps significantly.

    Your definition is a bit silly.

  • Mickey Rat||

    Sheldon, is that you?

  • Fuck You - Cut Spending||

    Goose step for science!

  • Sevo||

    National Lampoon wouldn't have dared to print a story like this.
    Satire is dead.

  • Ron||

    the problem with requiring someone to be of a certain license in order to speak is simply the government choosing who gets to speak and who doesn't. they are doing this very well with the global warming debate. anyone who is not a climatologist will be denounced as unknowledgeable or like when women's groups claim that men can not talk about womens issues unless they are tran's of course.

    Its all about suppression of speech by government license

  • Marty Feldman's Eyes||

    you don't need to be a licensed lawyer to write an article critical of a Supreme Court decision, you don't need to be a licensed landscape architect to create a gardening blog,

    Stop giving them ideas.

  • falardea||

    It's funny, overtime laws don't seem to enforce any distinction between someone with a degree and someone with a license.

  • techgump||

    Maybe Governing ought require a degree. Clearly these fools are inept at it, and pose a danger to society.

  • You're Kidding||

    I've said the same for years about overpaid cops. They always claim they are highly paid because they are professionals. I say, "Prove it!. Require a bachelor's degree in a related field as a minimum level of education to be a police officer".

    Then I have to watch to see if they're about to pull their gun on me..... :-(

  • Longtobefree||

    I have one; a degree in Public Administration.
    It is useless for any productive work.
    I did however use it to meet the requirement of "having a degree" in order to take a state qualification test for data processing job.
    Then I spent 45 years programming.

  • juris imprudent||

    I see an opportunity here - file complaints with this board about all of the unlicensed social engineering in the Oregon legislature.

  • Scarecrow Repair & Chippering||

    And statists wonder why libertarians detest coercive monopolistic government.

  • jcwconsult||

    The Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying is desperately trying to protect the ability of their engineers to deliberately set too-short of yellow intervals on traffic lights so the cities that employ those engineers can rob safe drivers with red light camera fines that are very profitable. If Mr. Järlström can get a discussion of why the yellows are often set too short into the official records, then the money grab racketeering with too-short of yellow intervals might have to be shut down in Oregon.

    In reality, any engineer that sets too-short of yellow intervals on the lights at camera intersections should lose their license to practice. Putting camera revenue above safety is criminally wrong.

    James C. Walker, National Motorists Association

  • jcwconsult||

    I will send this to the people noted. James C. Walker

  • Unicorn Abattoir||

    This man committed the greatest crime of all. He irritated a bureaucrat.

    Other than that, he's done nothing wrong. And I say this as an engineer who's been licensed for over 2 decades.

  • Uncle Jay||

    RE: After Challenging Red Light Cameras, Oregon Man Fined $500 for Practicing Engineering Without a License
    "Anyone should be allowed to talk about the traffic signals without being penalized," says Mats Järlström. He's suing the board.

    The $500 fine is the penalty one pays for question The State's red light camera laws.
    If Mr. Mats Jarlstrom does it again, The State will show its infinite mercy by having him castrated and blinded.
    Keep in mind talking about traffic signals is a serious offense in the People's Republic of Orgasm.

  • ctsketch||

    You don't need a license to work as an engineer or even call yourself one but you do need a license in CT to sign off on things that go external unless your company has their own stamp or reviewer.

    Once you pass the FE you are engineer-in-training but again some people go through their entire engineering career without a license and perfectly legally.

  • CS, P.E.||

    Sec. 20-302. Requirements for licensure. No person shall practice or offer to practice the profession of engineering in any of its branches, including land surveying, or use any title or description tending to convey the impression that such person is a professional engineer or a land surveyor, unless such person has been licensed or is exempt under the provisions of this chapter. The following shall be considered as minimum evidence satisfactory to the board or Commissioner of Consumer Protection that the applicant is qualified for licensure as a professional engineer, engineer-in-training, land surveyor or surveyor-in-training, respectively:

    You can't refer to yourself as an "engineer" on business cards or offer to provide engineering in CT if you are not a PE. Use of the term is subject to a $500 fine. I would verify that with your board to ensure you are on the right side of things.

  • You're Kidding||

    I have great respect for professional certifications................except when they're used as you are attempting to do here.....to claim absolute superiority to anyone and everyone else in a field. With a government guarantee.

    Ditto for PhD's who demand the title "doctor".

    CPAs who hold themselves out to be tax experts (There is no requirement for any understanding of tax law to become a CPA!)

    Certified Financial Planners who'll gladly take your money but can't guarantee you a thing.

    Umpteen kinds of insurance licenses which are really just a smoke screen to sell you something lucrative for an agent, that you'll probably never use and most likely won't understand.

    Licensed taxi operators who can offer you no more assurance of their upstanding ways than a simple Uber driver.

    The list goes on and on.

    Get off your high horse buddy!

  • CS, P.E.||

    I am on no "high horse", I am merely stating what the law is in every state. ... Buddy!! If you break the law, then you must be prepared to pay for the consequences of your actions. If you speed in your car, be prepared to get a ticket. Just because you may not get a ticket, does not mean that it is legal.

  • KBeckman||

    It's almost like it's trying to create a trademark.

  • Brian Ceccarelli||

    Every State lists exemptions. Mats qualifies for exemptions 3 and 4 in Connecticut:

    Sec. 20-309. Exemptions. The following persons shall be exempt from the provisions of this chapter: (1) An employee or a subordinate of a person holding a license under this chapter, provided the work of such employee shall be under the responsible supervision of a person so licensed; (2) any corporation whose operations are under the jurisdiction of the Public Utilities Regulatory Authority and the officers and employees of any such corporation or any contracting corporation affiliated with any such corporation; (3) any manufacturing or scientific research and development corporation and the officers and employees of any such corporation while engaged in the performance of their employment by such corporation, provided the engineering work performed by such corporation, officers and employees shall be incidental to the research and development or manufacturing activities of such corporation; (4) officers and employees of the government of the United States while engaged within this state in the practice of the profession of engineering or land surveying for said government; and (5) architects licensed under chapter 390, in the performance of work incidental to their profession.

  • TommyInIdaho||

  • CS, P.E.||

    As a licensed PE in 3 states, I can assure you that it is against civil law in all 50 states to use the word "engineer" in correspondence or on business cards, as an example. It is to protect the title which many of us had worked hard to attain. Several companies I have worked with in the past will instruct graduates or those that have only passed the fundamentals exam to use the words "XXX Engineering Department" or "Engineering Intern" on business cards. It is against the law to hold yourself out as an engineer if you have not been duly licensed by a state. This is not only to protect the term, but is also to protect, life, health and property of the general public. You would not want an unlicensed engineer (or one not working under a licensed engineer with responsible charge) working on a road you drive upon or on a bridge you use or on a refinery you may drive by every day. If you call yourself an "engineer" it carries meaning and to do so in a letter to the state board is not wise. Granted he has an engineering degree; however, if he wished to do so, he could sit for the exam after passing the 8 hour FE exam and provided references as well as proof of progressive engineering experience.

  • You're Kidding||

    Hey, there is a guy on the off ramp near my house claiming to be God. Who should issue the fine?

  • geo||

    You are simply wrong. Chemical engineers, mechanical engineers, petroleum engineers, and aerospace engineers are among the many engineers provided exemptions from most state licensure. All of the petroleum engineers and aerospace engineers that I personally know have business cards that say they are engineers. I even know consulting engineers in those professions that do not have a license and are not required to have a license. Frankly I am happy to know that a Civil Engineer nor a Surveyor, designed the refinery I drive by every day. But thank you for all the bumpy roads and poorly built bridges.

  • MoltarRocks||

    I'm sorry but you're splitting hairs here. The entire purpose of having any professional qualification is the inherent idea that one is doing so in the capacity to earn income in exchange for expertise - i.e. engage in commerce. It's a real stretch to get from defending your spouse in court utilizing logical discourse to engaging in such activity. That the board chose to view it as the latter shows their own draconian myopia. He's not acting as an engineer engaged in commerce. By the boards logic, it therefore become illegal to prepare one's own tax return and then subsequently have your family member defend you in front of an IRS hearing. Absurd.

  • Longtobefree||

    I do not confuse "professional qualification" with "a state license".
    They are very different.

  • MikeP2||

    "I can assure you that it is against civil law in all 50 states to use the word "engineer" in correspondence or on business cards, as an example"

    utter crap, complete falsehood

  • marshaul||

    I checked my state's code, and it very clearly applies only to "Professional Engineers" and a few other categories. Not a word said about use of the term "engineer".

    CS, P.E. is one of those individuals whose only accomplishment in life is the bureaucratic approbation of a state-issued license, and can't bear to see his life's meaning diminished by reality.

    Too bad.

  • CS, P.E.||

    How can you slander me openly if you know nothing of me, you moron. I have a succesful career and family. I only hope you can say the same. If you are not familiar with the code, then call the state board and ask them if you can put the title of engineer on your business card if you do not have a license. :)

  • CS, P.E.||

    How can you slander me openly if you know nothing of me, you moron. I have a succesful career and family. I only hope you can say the same. If you are not familiar with the code, then call the state board and ask them if you can put the title of engineer on your business card if you do not have a license. :)

  • CS, P.E.||

    How can you slander me openly if you know nothing of me, you moron. I have a succesful career and family. I only hope you can say the same. If you are not familiar with the code, then call the state board and ask them if you can put the title of engineer on your business card if you do not have a license. :)

  • CS, P.E.||

    How you can slander me openly without knowing me at all is very curious to say the least. It smacks of something you may see done on a playground in grammer school. If you call your state engineering board and ask them if you can put engineer as a title on your business card without having passed the P.E. exam, see what they say and you will have your answer.

  • CS, P.E.||

    Having passed both exams and now sitting on the NCEES board which develops the exam given nationwide to ChE's, I can tell you it is not difficult to do. Also, I should add that state boards in every state have an enforcement section and those guys have stacks of complaints inches high on their desks of peopls using the term "enginer" who are not duly licensed. To say that they are not efficient is an afront to them and me. They are understaffed, underpaid, and overwhelmed with investiagations. Walk a mile in their shoes and you would understand just a bit better.

    WCS, P.E.

  • R. K. Phillips||

    If the only complaint is that someone calls themselves an engineer without being licensed by the state, then the state can go screw themselves, because they are flat out wrong. What a waste of my tax money! If I have a degree in geology, I'd call myself a geologist. If I had a degree in electrical engineering, I'd call myself an electrical engineer.

  • CS, P.E.||

    And if you did and it came to the attention of the board in your state, you'd be fined as well. Look at your state civil code. There are reasons for that protection.

  • MoltarRocks||

    Again, licensure implies engaging in commerce. He didn't do so.

  • CS, P.E.||

    Licensure does not only apply to an implied engagement of commerce. If I claim to be an engineer and testify before a court, I am not engaging in commerce; however, I am still misrepresenting myself.

  • KBeckman||

    Do you re-test all certified engineers every so often to make sure they keep up with advances?

    If not then you're not protecting anything other than a de facto trademark on the word "Engineer"

  • Boothby171||

    They are required to take approved courses in their fields of interest and specialization, every renewal period (typically 30 "Professional Development Hours," equivalent to 3 college credits, every 2-3 years)

  • CS, P.E.||

    Most all states require engineers to acquire 15 professional development hours annualy (including ethics) or 30 biannually. So the answer is yes, there is a requirement to keep up with current advances and trends in the profession.

  • jelabarre||

    They are understaffed, underpaid, and overwhelmed with investiagations. Walk a mile in their shoes and you would understand just a bit better.

    If they are SO understaffed and underpaid, why are they wasting precious time and resources investigating and fining someone like this? It's blatantly obvious this is all about "protecting their phoney baloney jobs" (Gov. Le Petomane would be proud).

  • You're Kidding||

    I wonder if Jesus, the sanitation engineer, who drives the garbage truck in my neighborhood is in violation of these laws?

    Go figure.

  • CS, P.E.||

    Yes, he is and can be fined by the state board as well if he passes you a business card with that on it or offers engineering services to you. ;) :D

  • Jen G.||

    You realize that all your posts here have done is show that this insanity is universal, right? IOW you might be winning on the wording of the regulation, but not on the fundamental principle everyone else is arguing. So.. um, congrats? - you are absolutely right about how f*cked up the situation is. Arguing that the board is right because the regulations that the board wrote show them to be right doesn't hold much sway here, I think.

    'Engineer' is too generic a word to restrict in this capacity. No matter what regulations written in the 1950's proclaim, it doesn't imply any form of licensing to the average man on the street. The reasonable thing for licensing boards to do would be to stop a losing battle against the English language evolving in usage. They could easily take a page from the accountant's book and restrict the use of the license itself as being what is fraudulent. i.e. Anyone with an accounting degree or a job in the field could plausibly call themselves an 'accountant' but they can't legally call themselves a CPA.

    There we go, problem solved. People who took the exam can still proclaim their superiority for being licensed and other people can use words the way they are generally understood without risk of government retaliation from people with way too much time on their hands.

  • CS, P.E.||

    The board does not write and pass the law; that is the job of your duly elected legislature. Now, the board can provide input. However, ultimate determination of what the law means comes from the attorney general's office. Engineer as a term has been way overused and that dilutes its important meaning. It should not be lost here that the ultimate reason for the writing of these laws is to protect the HEALTH, SAFETY, and WELFARE of the general public. Passing the PE exam is a tool to ensure a minimum level of competency...not just knowledge that any can get with a diploma. Again, it is to protect all of us from that whom might practice but not hve the minimum competence.

  • KBeckman||

    Jokes on you. I've seen your licensing site. None of your FE exams would cover what a sanitation engineer does.

  • CS, P.E.||

    Heh heh. There is no PE exam for Sanitation Engineer. I don't need a degree to ride on the back of a truck...every 5 year old boy's dream. :D

  • Tionico||

    Mr. Jarlstrom's crime is failing to give money to the State of Oregon for the "use" of a certain word.

    Were I in HIS shoes, I would sue them for something like defamation of character, and write it all up proper legal like, so they could try and accuse him of being a lawyer without THAT Mother May I Card. I'd also sue for his time and costs in punching them back.
    Eedjits!! An engineer is an engineer is an engineer.. friemd of mine happens to drive locomotives for Southern Pacific Railroad, I believe it is, and HE does that mostly inside Oregon. If HE ran for office, and labelled himself an "engineer", would they fine HIM?

    Good grief, even the nannies are insane these days.

  • You're Kidding||

    My mother, who is unable to distinguish between Jesus and Jesús just thinks the guy is delusional.

    I just point out that, as a certified, government worker, he will retire long before she was able to and probably make better wages than she ever did.

  • therabidfrog||

    "Do not fuck with my bottom line!"

    - Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying

  • therabidfrog||

    "Do not f*** with my bottom line!"

    -Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying

  • croaker||

    Fire up the woodchipper.

  • Jacks61||

    Just when you believe you've read everything, you find out you haven't. So it's now against the f*cking law to have an opinion? Oregon is still part of the US.. unless I haven't read yet another insane story.

  • Robert||

    I had Sr. Biomed'l Engr. & Scientist as a job title. I never went to engrg. school.

  • No Yards Penalty||

    This is the same state where you can't pump your own gasoline because it's ''too dangerous.''

  • Hank Phillips||

    Some honest citizen might be pumping gas, and then suddenly recognize one of their lying oppressors lighting a cigar inside a limo just within squirting range. One cannot be too careful when mixing other people's economies!

  • Incredulous||

    This is insane. It is a first amendment right to call yourself an engineer or anything else you desire. Technically, it is only a violation if you fraudulently claim to be a "state-licensed" engineer. We need better justification for licensing regulations and better recognition of their constitutional limitations. As a basic right, you should be able to practice a profession without a fucking license as long as you don't claim to be licensed. Period. And we need a better mechanism for holding these tyrants accountable. There needs to be severe consequences, financial and criminal, for those bureaucrats who violate constitutional rights in this manner. This should extend to all government agents. Right now, all we have is a court saying "hey knock it off." And these creeps just go ahead and do it again.

  • Hank Phillips||

    Why nationalize when you can license and monopolize? The boodle comes to your gang of fascisti, and the liability is palmed off on the voting public!

  • Hank Phillips||

    I'd bet $50 that Järlström will do better on a High School physics or calculus exam than most of the "licensed engineers" on the Board of Bloated Blowhards. But waitaminnit! Is this the very reason command economy cartel operators hire their politicians to also make betting illegal?

  • Boothby171||

    I think that most every state in the US has a Professional Engineering Certification requirement. I (for instance) am certified in both Nevada and New York, as a Professional Mechanical Engineer.

    There's a near-constant discussion among PEs (Professional Engineers) as to just who gets to call themselves an engineer. Do you need a degree? Do you need a license? nd it looks like some of the state boards are also concerned with how engineers present themselves.

    My personal opinion is that you need a degree to call yourself an engineer. You need certification (taking some rather tough tests at the onset, and then maintaining meaningful educational credits every renewal period) to call yourself a Professional Engineer. I know a lot of PEs, though, who insist that you can only call yourself an Engineer if you are a Professional Engineer.

    A lot of the time, there is reciprocity between states, though you do have to fill out forms, get vouched for, and pay some fees. And renewals are on a state-by-state basis.

    Some categories of PE have some even more stringent requirements. If you are a structural engineer in California, for instance, you have to take special courses (and special tests) because they need to know that you know your stuff re. seismic loading and the like.

    This guy could have called himself a "Degreed Engineer," or possibly a "Non-Certified, Degreed Engineer" and softened the blow (I am assuming).

  • MikeP2||

    So you are happy with Occupational Licensing boards 'owning' the rights to use very general terminology?

    "There's a near-constant discussion among PEs (Professional Engineers) as to just who gets to call themselves an engineer"

    No one should give a rats arse what the 'credentialed' say regarding who gets to be in their club.

  • CS, P.E.||

    He would have avoided the fine for sure... if he had clearly sought to make that distinction; however, he didn't have the forethought to do so. ;)

  • Dimitri Cavalli||

    Why don't they fine Rachel Dolezal for claiming to be black when her family and DNA prove otherwise?

  • PaulBob||

    Looks like the State of Missouri would have no problem with someone without a P.E. certification calling themselves an engineer, as long as they don't call themselves a Professional Engineer.
    -------------------------
    Section 327.181.1
    3. Notwithstanding any provision of subsection 1 of this section, any person using the word "engineer", "engineers", or "engineering", alone or preceded by any word, or in combination with any words, may do so without being subject to disciplinary action by the board so long as such use is reflective of that person's profession or vocation and is clearly not indicating or implying that such person is holding himself or herself out as being a professional engineer or is willing or able to practice engineering as defined in this section.
    ------------------------

    So my business cards can, and do, say "Engineer".

  • CS, P.E.||

    Point taken... however, the main point I was seeking to make is to know the law in your state and follow it... this man didn't so it's his problem now. If that is how Missouri is now handling it, then kudos to them and to you. :) I stnad corrected if there has been any appearance of misspeaking.

  • Oldcarman||

    Typical of the coastal communists-
    The Greater Peoples Republic of Oregon are full of self-righteous, arrogant twits that know best for all. Can't wait for the entire left coast to falloff after the big earthquake!

  • J Neil Schulman||

    This kind of officious bullying needs to be answered with ruining the bully's comfortable life.

    Title 18 Section 242 of the United States Code will do the trick. The public official violating a citizen's protected constitutional rights is not allowed to use taxpayer funds for legal defense since it's a criminal acted committed "under color of authority." They will have to cash in savings, take a second mortgage, break their kids' college funds for their legal defense.

  • TPL||

    This absurdity should be slapped down with a lawsuit. Hard. I was an engineer for 20 years, with masters degree in engineering, and never had to "register" with the state like I was some sort of sex offender.

  • frankone||

    I hold a professional engineering license. It's like all professional licensure: Meant to restrict supply, to keep prices high. Indeed, in the US, you used to be able to take the exams WITHOUT a BS degree in Engineering. If you passed, you could become registered. The same is true for the bar! If you could pass the bar, you could practice law, regardless of whether you had a degree. Of course, that has changed.

    A fee must be paid each year and classes in 'continuing education' taken each year, which furthers those training industries and restricts supply further, since part-timers may find these requirements onerous. It's just another moneymaking scheme. And the 'professionals' who advocate it on grounds of safety, are just like the Unions who want to limit labor supply.

    In the case of Oregon, it appears the Board of Professional Engineers is ALSO engaging in politics by punishing people claiming to be an engineer, even if they aren't engaged in engineering design.

  • tommhan||

    Power corrupts, period.

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