by Brenée Goforth
Communications Associate, John Locke Foundation
A bill that has been making its way through the N.C. House would make it easier for veterans and military spouses to gain employment in North Carolina. Carolina Journal’s Julie Havlak reports:
The House Judiciary Committee approved House Bill 1053 on Thursday, June 4, and it heads to the House’s Homeland Security, Military, and Veterans Affairs committee.
The bill helps people with out-of-state licenses in certain professions transfer their licensure to North Carolina without having to obtain a state-specific license. Havlak explains:
The bill reduces regulatory barriers and fast-track the occupational licensure process for military applicants, veterans, and military spouses. The bill aims to increase transparency by requiring licensure boards to publish licensure information and report data on military members and their spouses. It should help veterans, active-duty military, and spouses get back in the labor force as COVID-19 restrictions ease.
North Carolina would also join an interstate licensure compact for audiology and speech pathology. This would allow veterans with certain out-of-state licenses to practice in North Carolina without undergoing the process to get a state license. It also expands access to telemedicine within participating states.
The interstate compact currently includes West Virginia, Utah, Wyoming, and Oklahoma. Four other states have introduced legislation to join the compact.
Licensure reciprocity has been making waves across the country recently with many states joining interstate licensure compacts like the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact (IMLC) which fast-tracks medical licensure for doctors who have a license to practice medicine in another state.
North Carolina also has a bill introduced in the Senate that would enter the state into the IMLC. JLF’s Jon Sanders explains the bill in a research brief from May:
The bill would require an occupational licensing board to issue a license to someone who has moved into North Carolina and applied for the license in his or her field of work if that person, among other things:
• has a current license in another state
• has been licensed for at least a year
• is in good standing
• has met all licensing requirements in that state
• is not under disciplinary action
• doesn’t have a disqualifying criminal record
• pays all licensing fees
Recognizing occupational licensure from out-of-state would bring North Carolina one step closer to workplace freedom.