Maintain Integrity of Architects/Engineers Licensure Act
Tennessee is one of the few states that enjoys the benefits of a joint licensure board—architects, engineers and landscape architects share one law, one board, one set of rules and policies. The benefits of this board are many:
- Cost effective use of funds. This Board is so profitable that it returns nearly $75,000 annually to colleges and universities to support their design programs of architecture, engineering and landscape architecture.
- We don’t fight with each other. In other states, architects and engineers engage in turf wars. In Tennessee, licensing board members work out any problems so they never hit your desk.
- This licensure law was amended about 20 years ago to conform to the building codes adopted in Tennessee to provide uniform requirements. Building officials follow one standard, instead of multiple (and even conflicting) standards to provide for safe buildings in Tennessee.
We urge you to keep this law intact instead creating multiple exemptions.
Most years, bills are introduced to “fix” a small problem related to licensure of architects and engineers, including when and how an architect or engineer is required to design a particular project.
In 2008, two bills proposed to change the law substantially. One would have changed when an A/E was required on public works from $25,000 to $250,000. Our associations looked into the problem that provoked introduction of the bill. We were able to solve the problem, and bill sponsors were happy to withdraw the bill.
In a second instance, the city of Cleveland discovered a problem related to the design and construction of signs and introduced a bill to solve that problem. We were able to work with the city of Cleveland and agreed they had a real problem. The solution, however, is to establish a task force to change the licensing board’s rules and policies; and so that bill was withdrawn as well.
We’ve got a good thing going in Tennessee, and we hope you will help us to keep our licensure law intact.