(click on news/podcast tab above to hear interview with Sarah Curry)
In January, Nebraskans in nearly 200 different occupations needed a government license to do their job, with many workers facing greater barriers to entry than in most other states. Following a legislative session where senators from all parties supported occupational licensing reforms, the number of licensed professions has been reduced slightly, and some licensing requirements have been streamlined.
But many of the state’s most burdensome occupational licensing laws still remain stubbornly unchanged or unexamined.
A new report by the Platte Institute provides a review of what happened—and didn’t happen—in the Legislature in 2017 when it comes to reducing licensing red tape that holds Nebraskans back, and what else workers, entrepreneurs, researchers, advocates, and regulators are saying can be done.
A condensed copy of the 2017 Occupational Licensing Review is attached in PDF format and is published in an extended version with a full appendix of resources at PlatteInstitute.org/Jobs.
“Nebraska has started the conversation on occupational licensing, and has already enacted some meaningful reforms, but there is more work to be done,” said Sarah Curry, Policy Director at the Platte Institute and author of the new report.
“We’ve still got too much red tape on the books, and the Legislature won’t be able to make enough of an impact by picking away at licenses one at a time. The only way to make a meaningful difference breaking down that many barriers is by approaching the problem in a more systematic way,” said Curry.