Job Licensing Reform Well Represented in Nebraska Legislature
Over 660 pieces of legislation have been introduced in the 105th Nebraska Legislature. Many of the bills will excite great debate and controversy in the State Capitol, but which of the bills will make the most difference for working families looking for better-paying jobs?
Nebraska’s State Senators have introduced some very worthwhile legislation when it comes to occupational licensing reform. Workers in Nebraska need permission to enter nearly 200 different occupations, and these requirements are sometimes far more burdensome than in other states.
Here are the key bills that can help to remove some of these burdens for our workforce:
LB341 streamlines an inconsistent state licensing requirement for bank executive officers that applies to some Nebraska banks, but not others. The bill would make it possible for banks to opt out of this requirement if they wish.
LB342 would provide for licensing reciprocity for military spouses in nursing careers.
LB343 removes major road blocks to a variety of personal care and health care professions. In addition to bringing Nebraska’s state licensing requirements for cosmetology, barbering, and massage therapy in line with our most reasonable neighboring states, the bill removes paperwork or burdensome requirements for cosmeticians, nail technologists, and a duplicative license for audiologists.
Here are some fact sheets about the professions the bill impacts:
LB344 would update and improve reciprocity and accessibility to licensure for mental health or substance use treatment professionals, increasing statewide access to health care services.
LB345 would remove a requirement that title examiners have a year of experience to earn a license. Nebraska is the only state that does this.
LB346 would end licensing requirements for motor vehicle salespeople altogether. Most states don’t do this, and dealerships are already required to be licensed.
LB347 ends unnecessary duplication requiring school bus drivers to spend more time and money at the DMV when they have already earned the federally-recognized Commercial Driver License.
Agriculture is also impacted by licensing reform. LB348 would end licensing for potato shippers in Nebraska, which is not done even in Idaho. LB507 would eliminate licensing for farm labor contractors. Only 9 states require this license, none of which border Nebraska.
LB588 would align Nebraska with 32 states where reflexologists don’t need to be licensed as massage therapists to work.
But the progress these bills offer could be lost without a framework for keeping licensing in check. LB299 would establish a process for assessing if occupational licensing laws or proposals are too burdensome, providing policymakers with less onerous regulatory alternatives.
Learn more about occupational licensing reform at PlatteInstitute.org/Jobs