The State of Arizona Threatens to Deregulate Landscape Architecture and Other Professions – We need your help!
Tune in to Arizona’s 91.5 KJZZ to listen to Brett Anderson, ASLA and Chris Jones, RLA speak with Mark Brodie on this issue! Today between 2:00-3:00pm AZ time.
February 18, 2016:
Unbeknownst to many in the design and development world here in Arizona, the State Legislature has put forth House Bill 2613 which, among other items, threatens to de-regulate Landscape Architecture in the State and move the Board of Technical Registration into the Arizona Department of Administration.
The proposed HB 2613 was heard and voted on by the House Commerce Committee on Wednesday, February 17th. The Bill passed this Committee and will proceed to the full House vote prior to the Senate. If this Bill passes, it will be a tremendous blow for not only the profession of Landscape Architecture, but the design, engineering, and development industry as a whole. Landscape Architects endure immense training and education and are charged with the health, safety, and welfare of the public; they are responsible for the design of parks, trails, bicycle paths, streets, public plazas, drainage ways, school campuses, communities and businesses throughout the State.
Without these highly educated and trained professionals, developers and land owners will be exposed to greater liability. Additionally, the passage of HB 2613 may gain the momentum to deregulate Architecture and Engineering disciplines next.
Brett Anderson and Chris Jones (both registered Landscape Architects) of AndersonBaron have been working with the Arizona ASLA Chapter and other groups here in Phoenix to help oppose this Bill. Both Brett and Chris sat down with Mark Brodie with KJZZ, Phoenix’s public radio station, for an interview to provide their professional feedback on the issue. Their interview will air this afternoon (2/18/16) between 2:00-3:00pm, Arizona time. Be sure to tune in!
If this Bill takes away our licensure, Arizona will be the only state to not have a professional licensure requirement for Landscape Architects! A 2003 report developed by the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) goes into detail on the issues of liability. Without licensed professionals on the work we provide, where would the liability fall? The State? The developer?
We still need your support! The Board of Technical Registration in Arizona was created in 1921 to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the public by requiring minimum competency criteria, educational criteria, and experience for landscape architecture, architecture, engineering, land surveying, and geology among others. This gives the public the general ease and assurance that professionals go through requirements to obtain the right to design public spaces. The general public may not understand the depth of our profession – but everyone has been exposed to decisions made by a Landscape Architect in their everyday lives. The design of playgrounds for the safety of children, ADA and accessibility concerns, and Crime Prevention through Environmental Design (CPTED), are just a few of the areas Landscape Architects make critical decisions that affect the health, safety, and welfare of the public.
The loss of Landscape Architect’s licensure is problematic for our industry. Aside from concerns of the health, safety, and welfare of the Arizona people, Arizona may concede to losing tenured, trained professionals to other States, or potential tax dollars going with them. Let your State Representatives know that this cannot happen. You can find your legislators’ contact information at http://azredistricting.org/districtlocator/. You can contact the Governor http://azgovernor.gov/governor/form/contact-governor-ducey. Let them know that you are opposed to HB 2613.