Senate Bill 120 regarding “qualified” interior designers was defeated in the House Local Government Committee by a vote of 8 to 3.
The vote on April 18, 2012 in the House Local Government Committee is the end of the road for SB120. As this issue is very important to NKBA Rocky Mountain Chapter members we feel it is imperative to report the results to our readers and visitors and to help everyone understand why NKBA was in opposition to SB120.
The primary reason given by most representatives voting in opposition to this bill seemed to be that it would have created redundant language that already exists in the exemption under the Architectural statutes giving NCIDQ certified designers the right to submit non-structural plans for building permits. Several representatives questioned the proponents’ arguments that an additional statute would improve the plan submission process that in some cases has been shown to be inconsistent. A sentiment expressed by one representative was that the permitting process by its very nature in requiring building departments to make judgment calls on the quality of submissions is inherently prone to inconsistences and this affects other design and building disciplines, not just interior designers.
Furthermore, Representative Balmer commented that in his opinion, this legislation was a way of bypassing the DORA review process in an end-run effort to promote licensure for the profession of interior design. He suggested that the proponents of this bill approach the issue of licensure for interior designers more directly in future legislation so that the real issues can be debated on their merit.
Those speaking in opposition to SB120 included representatives from ICC Building Inspectors, the American Institute of Architects, structural engineers, and licensed general contractors in addition to several members of NKBA. We thank them for their valuable input.
We would also like to thank those who took the time to send emails, letters, or phoned their state senators and representatives. A special thanks to those who attended the Senate and House hearings and spoke in opposition to this bill including Bob Castner, CKD; Nancy Moon, CKD; Dr. Albert Fink; Micki Hackenberger of Axiom; and Ed Nagorsky of NKBA.