Ohio House of Representatives Commerce and Labor Committee

Chairman Ron Young

May 22, 2018

Bryan C. Williams

Director of Government Affairs

Associated Builders and Contractors of Ohio

Sub HB 504 – Proponent Testimony

Good afternoon Chairman Young and members of the Commerce and Labor Committee. I am Bryan C. Williams, Director of Government Affairs for the Associated Builders and Contractors of Ohio. Ohio’s three ABC chapters have nearly 1,000 commercial general contractors, sub-contractors and affiliated businesses which promote the merit shop philosophy free market public policies.

ABC member contractors are completely dedicated to providing the highest quality construction product for the most competitive price while maintaining the highest level workplace safety.  Additionally, we work every day to recruit, train and employ the construction workforce of tomorrow.

ABC member companies support Sub. HB 504, a bill to provide for permissive certification of commercial interior design professionals in Ohio.

We support the legislation first, because it is permissive.  The bill does not require certification, nor does it prohibit interior design professionals who chose not to be certified, from working in Ohio.

Second, the bill allows services to be provided at a potentially lower cost. Presently when an educated, trained and qualified interior design professional completes their design, it currently must be redrawn and/or stamped by a licensed architect, or other licensed design professional.  This additional fee for review and approval of the draft design adds valuable time and more importantly costs to the project.  Under the bill, when certified, an interior design professional who meets the appropriate standards and qualifications, may submit their own designs for approval to the appropriate building officials without another design professional’s stamp of approval.

Often, licensure bills are thinly veiled attempts to limit the number of people who may work, thereby driving up the cost of doing business.  This happens even when there is no compelling public safety concern.

Substitute HB 504 is a welcome change to this.  Permissively allowing trained commercial interior design professionals to obtain certification under the architect/landscape architect board creates new opportunities to reduce costs while maintaining high standards of practice.