Northam, Cox Agree to Roll Back State Regs

Do beauty parlor employees really need a state license to shampoo hair?

Governor Ralph Northam and House of Delegates Speaker Kirk Cox announced legislation yesterday that would launch a pilot program to “remove burdensome and unnecessary regulatory requirements facing hard working Virginians.”

“We have a responsibility to constantly evaluate every regulatory requirement and policy to ensure that it is doing its job in the least restrictive way possible,” said Northam in a press release.

Added Cox: “We know that red tape hinders entrepreneurs, innovators, and small and large businesses alike from creating more of the good paying jobs that our people need. This pilot program will significantly reduce regulations in two heavily-regulated areas and lay the foundation for further efforts to reduce regulations across state government, helping our economy and making government more efficient at the same time.”

House Bill 883 creates a three-year pilot program to be administered by the Department of Planning and Budget. The program will focus on the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation and the Department of Criminal Justice Services, with a goal of reducing or streamlining regulatory requirements, compliance costs and regulatory burdens by 25 percent.

Professional licensure requirements have come under heavy fire in recent years for restricting job opportunities for lower income Virginians, and the Northam-Cox initiative follows a number of bills taking aim at specific regulations. Reports the Richmond Times-Dispatch:

On Monday, the House passed a bill to specify that hair salon workers who only clean, style or blow dry hair do not have to get a state-issued license. It also specifies that shampooing is not among the more sensitive chemical treatments that require extra government oversight.

“We don’t need to be regulating shampoos,” said Del. Mark Keam, D-Fairfax, the bill’s sponsor. “I don’t know about you, but I don’t want big government in my hair.”

Del. Nick Freitas, R-Culpeper, brought his daughter, Ally, onto the House floor Monday as a living argument for why the state should not include hair braiding it its cosmetology regulations.

When her friend provided her with a beautiful hair braid, she decided to compensate her with a dollar,” Freitas said. “And that is when her descent into crime began.”

Bacon’s bottom line: If we can decriminalize petty traffickers in marijuana, surely we can decriminalize shampooers and hair braiders!

Occupational licensing is a good place to start the regulatory rollback. The heavy hand of government isn’t oppressing big businesses here. It’s thwarting ordinary Virginians — typically lower-income Virginians with fewer job opportunities — from entering heavily regulated occupations and earning a living. Reform should appeal to free-marketeers and social justice warriors alike.

The bipartisan backing of this legislation is encouraging. If the pilot project proves successful, perhaps the experiment would provide impetus for deregulation of other sectors of the economy.

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5 responses to “Northam, Cox Agree to Roll Back State Regs

  1. I think Northam is demonstrating a willingness to govern from the center without ideological clutter – a welcome change from the contemporary tendencies of the political warriors… these days.

    But regulation has two sides to it and anyone who thinks it was created for no good reason in the first place – best be willing to listen to those who feel it is needed.

    So , hearings are needed and should be wide open and soliciting comments through any means available , i.e. online and email.. statewide versus some few committee meetings in Richmond.

    so ..here are some simple concepts:

    Should the folks who wash and perform personal services on your body – be REQUIRED to use sanitized equipment and procedures or is that up to the customer to decide in a willing buyer/seller transaction?

    are there occupational standards so customers are informed when they make choices?

    do you want the State assuring that a gallon of 87 octane is a gallon of 87 octane or just get the govt out of onerous nanny-state?

    should the state be “inspecting” restaurants for things like dishwasher temps, hot and cold food temps… etc? or should we just strip away those nettlesome rules that increase the cost of food?

    it’s pretty easy to point at some regulation without a whole lot of knowledge about why it exists AND the regulated business wants it gone…

    One of the bills this year wants to prevent drone operators from operating drones at hospital heliports.. who woulda thunk you needed a rule for that, eh? Oh.. and they want to also make it illegal for convicted sexual predators to own drones..

    The whole General Assembly is pretty much about creating NEW regulations, every year, right?

  2. Well, that’s hopeful. Maybe Northam can be a Trump like reformer without he histrionics and adolescent addiction to Twitter.

    • hmmm.. word is Mr. adolescent histrionics wants a Grand Military Parade next… I presume to rival the ones held in Pyongyang.

      https://nypost.com/2018/02/06/trump-issues-orders-for-a-grand-military-parade-in-washington-dc/

      Pray God that Northam has no such aspirations..

      • I think a military parade is a great idea. I’ll go if it’s in Washington. According to the article you posted he was impressed by a military parade in France, not North Korea. What’s wrong with celebrating the service and sacrifice made by members of our military?

        As for Northam … he should demand a parade at the end of the General Assembly session with all legislators dressed as circus clowns marching through the streets of Richmond. At the mid-point of the parade the CEO of Dominion will hand each of them a ceremonial $100 bill and repeat, one hundred and forty times, “there’s more of this to come if you continue to be a good clown”.

      • I too think a military parade would be amazing. I believe the last one was conducted by Civil War reenactors in 1990 to commemorate the 125th anniversary of the Grand March celebrating the end of the War. I’m not aware this was repeated in 2015, but I might be missing something.

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