News Release: Legislative Testimonies for January 25
Contact: Adam Weinberg
Phone: (402) 452-3737
Legislative Testimony for January 25: LB30 & LB64
Job Licensing Bills Require or Remove Internships
Update: After further discussion on possible changes to LB30, the Platte Institute provided neutral testimony on the bill.
LINCOLN, NE – The Platte Institute will testify on two job licensing bills before the Legislature’s Government, Military and Veterans Affairs Committee today.
Platte Institute Senior Fellow for Job Licensing Reform Laura Ebke will testify in partial opposition to Legislative Bill 30 in State Capitol Room 1507. The hearing begins at 1:30 p.m. LB30 is currently first on the agenda.
LB30 contains a number of provisions related to the licensure and practice of landscape architects. Ebke will speak primarily on the bill’s proposal to create an additional licensing requirement for landscape architect interns, and criminal penalties added to the bill that could be used to charge someone said to be practicing landscape architecture without a license.
“Ultimately, this bill—and several other bills introduced this session—seem to be flying in the face of a nationwide effort to reduce overregulation of occupations,” said Ebke.
Landscape architects are one of Nebraska’s nearly 200 licensed professions, which will be subject to the upcoming Occupational Board Reform Act review process Ebke helped pass into law as a state senator in 2018.
“As I read the bill, I see no independent practice capability for the interns. So what you seem to be doing here is creating a new license, which entitles the licensee to nothing, except for fulfilling the internship requirements that you’ve added to the licensure requirement for a Landscape Architect,“ said Ebke.
Next on the agenda in the Government Committee, Platte Institute Director of Government Relations Nicole Fox will testify in support of Sen. Mike Groene’s Legislative Bill 64.
LB64 significantly reduces barriers to earning a license for polygraph and voice analysis examiners. Most states require private certification by the National Institute for Truth Verification to practice this profession.
In Nebraska, however, state law contains additional requirements to complete 250 hours of classroom instruction, written exams, and an 18 month internship which must include conducting 50 truth verification exams. The existing law also requires applicants for the license to either have a bachelor’s degree, four years of investigative experience, or four years of experience administering polygraphs, which LB64 would strike.
The bill also ends a requirement for the licensed examiners to be citizens of Nebraska.
Polygraph tests may be used for screening of employment candidates in law enforcement or a select group of private sector professions where security considerations are made. Law enforcement officials are also expected to testify in support of the bill, as some agencies face a shortage of examiners.
“LB64 is in line with a national effort to reduce overregulation of occupations, efforts supported by both the Obama administration and the Trump administration,” said Fox.
“This bill is a great example of law enforcement taking the initiative to update a licensing law to reduce barriers for their colleagues,” said Fox.
Ebke and Fox’s testimonies are posted online at PlatteInstitute.org/Testimony.
To schedule an interview on these topics, please contact Adam Weinberg at (402) 452-3737 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Platte Institute advances policies that remove barriers to growth and opportunity in Nebraska. More media resources are available at PlatteInstitute.org/Media.