Nebraska’s Platte Institute praises moves to reduce the number of occupational licenses required in Nebraska and says the state is one of the leaders in attempting to cut red tape.
State lawmakers have been reviewing licensing requirements for various occupations, but this past legislative session approved a 5-year review of all 200-plus jobs which require a government license (LB 299).
Sarah Curry with the Platte Institute says too many members of an occupation advocate for licenses to protect their turf. She says red tape can be cut without imperiling safety.
“We’re not advocating to take away a pilot’s license or take away a medical doctor’s license, but there are some smaller, more niche licenses that are more of a regulatory burden than they are protecting the public, because there’s no history of the public ever being harmed by these people,” Curry tells reporters during a conference call.
Curry acknowledges this is a relatively new policy and issues could arise that need to be addressed in the future.
The Platte Institute reports that since 2017 legislators have adopted over 30 news bills or amendments addressing occupational licensing. The institute has high hopes for LB 299, stating it gives lawmakers tools needed to cut unnecessary red tape. The Platte Institute suggests the state consider less restrictive occupational regulations, such as private certification, registration, insurance or bonding, and inspections as well as open market competition as an alternative to requiring an occupational license.
It has issued a new report which states that in the 1950s, less than 5% of the United States workforce required a license. Today, nearly 30% require a license. A national report indicates Nebraska requires more licensing than normal.
AUDIO: Brent Martin reports [:45]