Virginia’s removing CEU requirements- Let’s get involved.
The removal of the continued education provision on license renewal will only serve to set Virginia back in terms of qualified and properly educated tradesmen as well as decrease the assurance to Virginia citizens that the tradesman they hire is up to date on the latest minimum code standards. As your NEMA Field Representative, Virginia Master Electrician and Certified Virginia Educator I encourage everyone to get involved in these public hearings and express your desire to keep Virginia and our citizens safer by knowing that tradesmen you hire are up-to-date on the current safety codes and standards.
The Virginia Board for Contractors recently adopted proposed regulations that would include the elimination of continuing education as a prerequisite for renewal for those individuals holding a tradesman license in the state of Virginia. All regulatory action taken by the Board is done in accordance with the provisions of the statutes and executive orders in place at the time the regulatory process is started. The proposed regulations that include the elimination of continuing education are currently in the Executive Branch Review process, after which time there will be a 60 day public comment period which will include public hearings held in various places around Virginia. These regulations have already gone through the first stage of the process, the Notice of Intended Regulatory Action stage, which included a 30 day public comment period. All of these actions have been noticed on the Virginia Town Hall webpage and mailings were sent to the individuals listed on the Board's public participation mailing list. If you are not on the list I encourage you to join this list and get involved.
After the public comment period and the hearings are conducted the Board, usually at the first meeting after the conclusion of the comment periods, will vote on the final regulations, which will then go through the Executive Branch Review process once again. The typical time frame for the completion of the regulatory process from start to finish ranges from one to three years, and can often be longer, depending on the amount of time it takes to do the Executive Branch Review, required publication times, and the schedule of the Board for Contractors.
While the Board has the authority to go into regulatory review at any time, the majority of the reviews and proposed amendments are in response to legislation involving regulatory programs or studies. This particular review was done in response to an Executive Order issued by the Governor that required all boards to perform a line by line evaluation of current regulations to determine if any were obsolete or overly burdensome to the regulant population, and HB1645, passed by the 2013 General Assembly, which requires that the Board review the current continuing education requirements.
Contact: Paul Abernathy: Paul.Abernathy@NEMA.org