Chairman Brewer and members of the committee, my name is Laura Ebke. I am the Senior Fellow for Job Licensing at the Platte Institute, and I am pleased to be here today to testify in favor of LB1068.
While the Platte Institute has maintained a firm position in opposition to new licensing, in favor of reducing barriers to employment, and encouraging the free market to work, we recognize that we do not live in a vacuum, and that occasionally, some level of government imprimatur is needed in order to PREVENT barriers to employment, and to give consumers maximum options for service.
We thank the Interior Designers for reaching out to us last year to explore ways of achieving their goals, short of creating a new practice act. It would appear that LB1068, as introduced, satisfies both the goals of the Interior Designers, and the desire that many of us have to limit unnecessary regulation.
In this instance, Interior Designers were seeking a way to obtain the ability to stamp or sign their own design plans to be recognized by local building inspectors, rather than needing to seek separate approval by architects or engineers. What you see before you for consideration is a means for Interior Designers who wish to practice within a certain scope to voluntarily register with the state, upon proving their certification by a national competency examination and showing proof of professional liability insurance.
Not all Interior Designers will choose to become registered, and this bill does not exclude those from using the term “Interior Designer”—it merely prevents the use of “Registered” and will not allow them to stamp or sign their plans independently.
This is a fine example of an effort to use “least restrictive means” by the proponents of this bill, to accomplish the goals desired. We thank Senator Hunt for introducing this bill, and urge your favorable consideration.