Is public choice theory a sufficient explanation for the existence of occupational licensing? While some licenses are easily explained by public choice theory, alternative explanations like public protection or professionalization can better explain the existence of some licenses. Differentiating the causes of licensing is necessary for reformers to determine whether or not a license should be preserved, changed in its implementation, or done away with entirely.
News and Commentary
Nevada’s SB355, which is focused on the licensing battle between the state board of physical therapy and the board of Oriental Medicine over acupuncture is becoming a fierce battle. The boards have combine to spend $500,000 on lobbying the bill.
Illinois State Senator Iris Martinez is proposing a bill that would drop the citizen requirement for all occupational licenses. Last year, she authored a passed bill that eliminated the requirement for occupations in finance and education.
North Dakota’s bill that would allow military spouses to carry over their licenses from other states has passed.
The Rhode Island state legislature passed a bill exempting hair braiders and cosmeticians from needing licenses. The state has momentum for more reform with two Senators calling for removing the restrictions on people with previous criminal convictions.
An interesting optometry-related bill is making its way through the Oklahoma senate. The only state that allows optometrists to perform minor surgeries, the bill would give individual practitioners the option to open clinics inside of big box retailers but with no surgery capabilities.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, who has generally be a strong advocate for relaxing licensing requirements, came out against expanding scope-of-practice for nurse practitioners. Expanding NP authorities has been a priority for House Speaker Jose Oliva.
AZCentral tries to understand why the state democratic party hasn’t been more in favor of Gov. Ducey’s significant occupational licensing reform efforts. Despite being overwhelmingly regressive, elected officials have been eager to oppose the significant deregulation bills that recently passed.
The Heartland Institute gives a useful summary on the reform efforts underway in Florida and Washington. Both states are looking at solving their respective health care shortages through expanding scope-of-practice for NPs.