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Spotlight on Occupational Licensing – PCC Update

The PCC, a nonprofit association that focuses on legislation impacting professional certification programs, those who hold private certification credentials and the many constituencies that rely on professional certification, recently released its annual update for fiscal year 2020-2021. This organization actively monitors state and federal legislative and regulatory activity that is affecting professional certification and implements strategic initiatives to support efforts.

Over the past year, the PCC monitored and analyzed over 140 bills in more than 43 states and provided a regularly updated State Legislative WatchList and thorough bill summary of relevant legislation to members. Current state legislative efforts are centered around bills focused on the topics of universal licensure, ex-offender reentry and clean slate initiatives.

The scope of legislative monitoring/analysis/advocacy for the PCC was expanded during the past year to include licensing reciprocity/universal licensure bills. To support this, a second legislative watchlist was developed to cover such reciprocity bills, plus a federal legislation watchlist.

In addition to its state efforts, the PCC is consistently engaged in positive advocacy and federal legislation efforts that may benefit BOC credential holders. Some highlights of the organization’s efforts during the 2020-2021 fiscal year include:

  • Worked with a bipartisan group of Members of Congress to draft and re-introduce the Freedom to Invest in Tomorrow’s Workforce Act (S. 905/H.R. 2171), which would allow tax-favored 529 accounts to pay for the cost of obtaining and maintaining a certification, including exam fees and other qualified expenses.
  • Met with staff of the House Education and Labor Committee, Senate HELP Committee, and the House Ways and Means Committee about introduced and proposed legislation to increase opportunities for Americans to earn professional certifications.
  • The Third Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision, consistent with the PCC/ASAE/ICE amicus brief, on all grounds in Kenney v. American Board of Internal Medicine, which bolsters the principal that private certification bodies have the right to establish their own credentialing standards.

The PCC communicated with numerous industry groups and stakeholders to identify ways to coordinate efforts on issues of mutual interest/concern. They reached out to stakeholders driving legislative activity affecting the certification community, including the American Civil Liberties Union, American Legislative Exchange Council, Institute for Justice, National Employment Law Project and others.

Details about additional PCC efforts and accomplishments during the past year can be found here.

The PCC’s organizational members include non-governmental professional certification organizations, professional societies and service providers. The PCC’s members reflect a wide spectrum of professions, including health care, engineering, financial services, and information technology, among many others. Our founding organizations – the American Society of Association Executives (the leading organization for association management) and the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (the leading developer of accreditation standards for professional certification programs) – govern the PCC.

BOC has been a member of PCC since August 2018 to help address efforts to enact state legislation that would undermine the activities or recognition of certifications developed or offered by non-governmental, private certification organizations. Find out more at About PCC.

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