January 18, 2017
NSPE and the Alabama Society of Professional Engineers have joined forces to oppose a proposed regulatory change that would eliminate current qualifications-based selection requirements in the state. In a joint letter to the Alabama Board of Licensure for Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, NSPE President Kodi Jean Verhalen, P.E., Esq., F.NSPE and ASPE President Paul McCain, P.E., urged the board to retain its current QBS requirements: “The administrative regulations proposed for repeal are important components of QBS…. Unfortunately, the recommended amendment is inconsistent with QBS and creates a procurement system in which price alone is given priority over the competence and qualifications of the provider in making procurement requirements.
January 10, 2017
NSPE and the West Virginia Society of Professional Engineers extended their sincerest congratulations to longtime NSPE and WVSPE member H. Wood “Woody” Thrasher on his appointment as West Virginia’s secretary of commerce. NSPE President Kodi Jean Verhalen, P.E., Esq., F.NSPE, and WVSPE President David Weaver, P.E., noted that “The PE license demonstrates an engineer’s commitment to the highest standards of engineering practice and ethical conduct and shows that the individual has the proper education, experience, and qualifications to provide vital engineering services to the public…. [Thrasher’s] appointment as Secretary of Commerce for the great state of West Virginia has delivered this assurance to the citizens of the state.
December 28, 2016
What are the legislative and regulatory threats professional engineers will be facing in 2017? Every year, PEs face challenges to the practice of engineering. And every year, in response, NSPE works to protect the PE license and promote continuous focus on the public health, safety, and welfare.
December 7, 2016
A new NSPE report provides a comprehensive look at how state laws define “the practice of engineering.” Defining engineering practice is critical to understanding the professional engineer’s obligation to the public health, safety, and welfare. While the public places great trust in professional engineers, many people—legislators and regulators included—don’t know that engineering practice is, in fact, legally defined or that the definitions vary from state to state.
December 5, 2016
The Environmental Protection Agency has emphasized the key role of PEs in hazardous waste management, in yet another victory for the professional engineer and the public health, safety, and welfare. In the EPA’s final version of the Hazardous Waste Generator Improvements Rule, a professional engineer is required to certify that a containment building for hazardous waste complies with specified design standards.
November 16, 2016
As more state legislators and regulators take action on the procurement of engineering services, NSPE has launched an online map that provides the latest state-by-state details.
NSPE believes that all engineering services should be performed by qualified professional engineers on the basis of design ability, experience, integrity, and judgment. To implement this principle, NSPE supports a qualifications-based selection procedure for all engineering services procurement. Recently, eight states introduced legislation or regulations that would affect QBS. This is an important issue that NSPE is proactively tracking. View the map and other QBS developments.
November 14, 2016
On November 11, NSPE submitted public comment to the California Department of Motor Vehicles regarding the department’s revised draft regulations for the deployment of autonomous vehicles, issued on September 30. In the draft regulations, the CDMV allows manufacturers and suppliers to self-certify, thereby eliminating a critical third-party safety check.
November 7, 2016
On November 4, NSPE and the Wyoming Society of Professional Engineers submitted a joint public comment urging the Wyoming Board of Professional Engineers and Professional Land Surveyors to rescind draft language that would waive the requirement for taking the Fundamentals of Engineering examination (FE exam) for individuals who have engaged in the practice of engineering for at least twenty years.
October 26, 2016
On October 25, NSPE submitted a formal public comment to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration calling for greater involvement by professional engineers in NHTSA’s guidelines for the development and deployment of autonomous vehicles. NHTSA’s recently released Federal Automated Vehicles Policy, while not binding, is a clear indication of the agency’s views on the regulation of this quickly developing technology.
October 12, 2016
In another significant victory for professional engineers, the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement increased the role of professional engineers in an updated oil and natural gas production safety final rulemaking. The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement issued a final rule updating the regulations regarding oil and natural gas production safety on the Outer Continental Shelf by addressing issues such as safety and pollution prevention equipment design and maintenance, production safety systems, subsurface safety devices, and safety device testing. The changes in this rule are necessary to improve human safety, environmental protection, and regulatory oversight of critical equipment involving production safety systems. Of particular importance were changes to the approval of safety systems design and installation features.