Threats to Professional Licensure: State List

West Virginia

“Consumer Choice”: Allows unlicensed persons to practice occupations that require licensure, provided the persons disclosed that they are unlicensed.
 Potential Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: S.B. 492/H.B. 2697
Status:
Died upon adjournment.
Summary:

Known as a “Consumer Choice Bill,” these companion bills allow any person to practice any occupation without a license, as long as the person discloses to the consumer that he is unlicensed, before entering into an agreement with the consumer.

Other: A legislative, regulatory, or executive action that falls outside other threat categories, including proposed elimination of other occupational licenses, that doesn’t directly threaten professional engineers but requires attention.
 Potential Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: S.B. 313/H.B. 4011
Status:
Died upon adjournment.
Summary:

S.B. 313 and H.B. 4011 reorganizes the codification of licensing entities into three chapters organized by occupational subject matter, education criteria, and other common requirements for licensure. It does not change the jurisdiction power of the engineering board, but it can make it easier to enact sweeping licensing reform in the future.

“Consumer Choice”: Allows unlicensed persons to practice occupations that require licensure, provided the persons disclosed that they are unlicensed.
 Potential Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: S.B. 218
Status:
Died upon adjournment.
Summary:

“Buyer Beware” legislation, also known as a “Consumer Choice Bill,” this companion bill would allow any person to practice any occupation without a license, as long as the person discloses to the consumer that he is unlicensed, before entering into an agreement with the consumer.

“Right to Engage in a Lawful Occupation Act.” Seeks to establish the least restrictive means of regulating an occupation. Often proposes the elimination of licensure requirements for certain professions. Professional engineers aren’t specifically targeted, but are included.
 Potential Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: WV S.B. 646
Status:
Died upon adjournment.
Summary:

S.B. 646 requires amendment of existing occupational licensing regulations, using the “least restrictive” model that assumed market competition is sufficient to protect public health and safety.

“Right to Engage in a Lawful Occupation Act.” Seeks to establish the least restrictive means of regulating an occupation. Often proposes the elimination of licensure requirements for certain professions. Professional engineers aren’t specifically targeted, but are included.
 Potential Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: H.B 4949
Status:
Died upon adjournment.
Summary:

H.B. 4949 requires review and amendment of existing occupational licensing regulations, using the “least restrictive” model that assumed market competition is sufficient to protect public health and safety.

“Consumer Choice”: Allows unlicensed persons to practice occupations that require licensure, provided the persons disclosed that they are unlicensed.
 Active Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: S.B. 492; H.B. 2697
Status:
Referred to Government Organization Committee, 1/31/2020
Referred to House Industry and Labor Committee, 1/28/2020
Summary:

“Buyer Beware” legislation, also known as a “Consumer Choice Bill,” these companion bills would allow any person to practice any occupation without a license, as long as the person discloses to the consumer that he is unlicensed, before entering into an agreement with the consumer.

Legislation requiring the review and analysis of licensing requirements, resulting in recommendations to remove any unnecessary or overly burdensome licensing requirements. This piece of legislation does not specifically target professional engineers.
 Potential Threat
Legislative/Executive Order/Regulatory: Legislative
Bill Number: HCR 106
Status:
Failed upon adjournment on 3/10/2018.
Summary:

This Concurrent Resolution stated that the West Virginia Legislature is committed to protecting the public while balancing economic opportunity by studying the various forms of licensure, certification and registration of occupations and professions to ensure requirements are the least burdensome and as minimally restrictive as possible, while protecting public health and safety./ The measure requested the Joint Committee on Government and Finance to conduct a study of the various forms of occupational and professional regulation, and report back to the Legislature with any recommendations for the 2019 Legislative Session.

Although the measure died upon adjournment, the proposal could still be studied as an interim topic if the legislature determines the need to do so.

NSPE reached out to the West Virginia Society of Professional Engineers about the legislation and will continue to work together to defeat attacks on the PE license.