09 Feb HB141 DOC Authority Over BPELS

Licensees may be interested in HB 141.  Page 4 has the goodies.  The licensing board will be advisory only if this passes.  It is now in the State Senate and needs only the Senate yes vote and governor’s signature to become law upon his signature.

This will give Labor Department Commissioner Busy full authority over every action of the Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors.

LAWS Detailed Bill Information Page

Bill Draft Number: LC0392    Current Bill Text:      Current version of this bill  Previous Version(s)  Access all versions of this bill
Bill Type – Number: HB 141
Short Title: Provide licensing boards with active supervision in antitrust liability cases
Primary Sponsor: Ryan Lynch  (D) HD 76

What action should MARLS take on House Bill 141?

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  • mattm
    Posted at 12:35h, 09 February

    After reading this a couple times… I have mixed thoughts.
    On one hand it appears to require the state Licensing Board to be actively administered under the commisioner of labor and industry, this is a reaction to the Dental board that was sued back east. Long story short, part of that case was that the dental board had no public members. Based on my limited understanding of the licensure board make up.. this is not the case with the Montana Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors.

    When you read the end, New Section 5, “The department may adopt rules
    10 necessary to carry out active supervision of board actions as provided for in 37-1-121 and [section 4].” This legislation appears to allow a fair amount of regulatory power to the Department, that I am opposed to.

    I am actually opposed to the entirety of this as it adds additional bureaucracy to a critical part of safeguarding both our profession and most importantly the public.


    Matt Morris

  • Russ
    Posted at 15:30h, 09 February

    I whole heartedly agree with Matt M’s comments on this bill, for the same reasons stated.

  • Jane Eby
    Posted at 17:23h, 09 February

    The meat of the bill, new section (4), gives the Commissioner of the Department of Labor and Industry (DLI) complete power over all licensing boards to disapprove of any board action taken that involves competition in trade or commerce. The position is currently held by Pam Bucy and it is a political appointment.. Most everything a board does can be related to competition or trade in commerce because boards are regulating licensed professions. Though the bill says the commissioner may not assign final approval, what it is really saying is that if the boards do not do as the commissioner says, then the department of labor and industry is absolving itself of any liability and the individual board members will become personally liable. In other words, the boards become de facto advisory. What is the purpose of serving on a board if that were the case? Unfortunately, this attitude already prevails in the DLI and this bill is no surprise to me. The department wants the boards to be advisory. This bill would make that happen. I encourage everyone to contact their senators and tell them to vote against this bill.

  • Dan Stahly
    Posted at 06:32h, 21 February

    Here’s another take on this bill. Please read the FTC guideline link, particularly Section II and following. Question 1 at the bottom of page 7 is a good explanation of what this bill seems to be about.


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