SACRAMENTO – Today, the Senate Committee on Business, Professions, and Economic Development passed SB 999 by Senator Mike Morrell (R-Rancho Cucamonga), which would start tackling California’s burdensome occupational licensing system by repealing the requirements to work in a number of personal care-related career fields.
“It is no coincidence that California is ranked one of the most difficult states in which do business, while simultaneously holding the distinction of having some of the most burdensome occupational licensing requirements,” said Morrell. “I am grateful for the support of my colleagues in this effort. SB 999 is about lowering barriers to workforce entry and increasing economic opportunity.”
The practices of shampooing, arranging, dressing, curling, waving, cleansing, and beautifying hair all currently require over 1,500 hours of training, several exams, and up to $125 in fees in order to receive a license. They are just a small snapshot of the over 300 different jobs that require licenses in California, which has prompted the Institute for Justice to rank the state as the “most broadly and onerously licensed” in the country.
SB 999 is sponsored by the R Street Institute, a non-partisan policy think tank based in Washington, D.C. On the topic of the bill and licensing in general, Steven Greenhut, Western region director for the R Street Institute observed in a recent op-ed that “We can have a vigorous debate about the value of occupational licensing in general, but there should be no debate about the importance of removing onerous standards that benefit no one and simply get in the way of people doing an honest day’s work.”
The final bipartisan vote in favor of SB 999 was 6-1. The bill now heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration.