By Darren Reaman, Director of Government Affairs
2019 has already been an active year in a number of state legislatures -- and we think it’s important CEDIA members are aware of the issues impacting the residential technology systems industry.
CEDIA is currently tracking:
- 118 legislative bills in 36 states
- 152 regulations in 35 states
What follows is a list of the states that are presenting us with issues – and we could really use our members’ help. If you’d like to get involved, please contact me at email@example.com
Your participation can really make a difference. Arizona
As introduced, House Bill 2181 would not require a license for persons who provide low-voltage services except for alarm systems. The bill eliminates the need for Arizona’s C-67, R-67, and CR-67 licenses for low-voltage work.
The amended version of House Bill 2181 includes “other related services” within the exemption for cable television, satellite television and telecommunications providers. This is problematic because it is very broad and could include all the services covered by a C-67, CR-67, or R-67 license. Licensing provides protections for consumers by requiring insurance and permits, as well as demonstration of minimum levels of competence. Maryland
Maryland House Bills 792 and 905 are scheduled for a committee hearing on Friday, March 1, 2019 before the Economic Matters Committee.
Maryland House Bill 792 creates a statewide electrical license. As introduced, House Bill 792 would require anyone who provides low-voltage services to have a master or journeyman electrician license based on the broad definition of “provide electrical services.”
Maryland House Bill 905 establishes a low-voltage electrician license. The low-voltage electrician license will cover work up to 80 volts for audio systems and 50 volts for other low-voltage work. To obtain a low-voltage electrician’s license one must have three years of work experience providing electrical services or have completed an electrician apprenticeship program. CEDIA will attend the March 1 committee hearing and it is vital members also attend the hearing to express the impact that both pieces of legislation will have on their business. North Dakota
In North Dakota, Senate Bill 2359 -- legislation relating to the regulation of power limited technicians -- the license scope did not include low-voltage lighting. One would have to be a licensed electrician to install low-voltage lighting. The legislation included a limited grandfathering clause covering only two people per business. Anyone not grandfathered would have to take a low-voltage exam created by the Electrical Board which has no power limited technician representation on the Board.
Another concern with Senate Bill 2359 is a lack of representation on the Electrical Board for those licensed as power limited technicians. This is problematic as the Board will have no understanding as to current and future low-voltage technologies. Furthermore, the Board is responsible to write the power limited technician exam.
North Dakota Senate Bill 2359 has been amended to study the issue of licensing for power limited technicians. Oklahoma
As introduced, Senate Bill 175 has consequences for home technology professionals and the residential technology systems industry. In 2018, CEDIA testified on House Bill 2935 for the clarifying amendment for Class 2 and Class 3 circuits. Senate Bill 175 would undo this important distinction between low-voltage electronic systems and electrical work. Senate Bill would make the Class 2 and Class 3 circuits exemption exclusive to alarm systems. Senate Bill 175 would force home technology professionals in Oklahoma to obtain an electrical license which does not properly represent the profession. CEDIA has worked with other industry stakeholders on amendment language to ensure the work of a home technology professional’s work does not fall under the scope of an electrical license. Texas
House Bill 1141 has been introduced which will compromise the low-voltage exemption within the Texas Electrical Safety and Licensing Act by restricting the low-voltage exemption to less than 50 volts. This would now require home technology professionals to have an electrical license for some of the work they complete in Texas. CEDIA is currently monitoring House Bill 1141 as it has not been assigned to a committee yet. Utah
In January, the Utah Division of Occupational and Professional Licensing posted a notice of proposed rule to amend the Electricians Licensing Act Rule. One of the changes was to the description of low-voltage cabling at 50 volts and would eliminate the low-voltage references to the National Electrical Code. The proposed change was problematic and certain work of home technology professionals would now be classified as electrical work requiring an electrical contractors license.
Due to feedback the proposed low-voltage amendment was pulled from the pending rule hearing. A future meeting on the rule will be held.
CEDIA continues to work on your behalf on a daily basis. Again, feel free to contact me with questions or to attend an upcoming committee hearing: firstname.lastname@example.org