It’s days like this when I wish the Minnesota Fantasy Legislature was still around. A bill that got a hearing in a Senate committee today is the type we used to sink our teeth into — the kind that would get almost no coverage.
SF376 requires the licensing of interior designers:
Any person shall be deemed to be practicing licensed interior design within the meaning of sections 326.02 to 326.15 who holds out as being able to perform or does perform any professional service in connection with the planning, design, or administration of construction for the purpose of ensuring compliance with specifications and design of any private or public interior spaces, including preparation of documents relative to non-load-bearing interior construction, programming, space planning, finishes, materials, and furnishings where the safeguarding of the occupants’ life, health, safety, welfare is concerned or involved, when the professional service requires the application of design theories related to human behavior and aesthetics, acquired by education and experience. Licensed interior designers are design professionals who are qualified by means of education, experience, and examination.
This is a legislative initiative of the International Interior Design Association Northland. It says licensing will make sure that poisonous toxins are kept out of your workplace, fire retardant substances are used, and more effort will be made toward using renewable materials. The group’s top 10 list of reasons to support the bill includes, “to keep your wrists and backs in good health through the personal application of ergonomic standards.”
Apparently, this is causing quite a stir nationwide between designers and remodelers. Other states have also moved to license interior designers, according to a blog called Interior Design Freedom Coalition.
“This bill will add nothing to the health, safety and welfare of the public. Rather, it will enable a handful of interior designers to corner the design market at the expense of our members and others in the design community who will essentially be barred from working. Study after study has shown no evidence to suggest that harm is occurring to the public as a result of the unregulated practice of interior designers,” it said last year when a similar bill was filed.