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Mackinac Center for Public Policy
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2007 House Bill 4772: Impose licensure on interior designers
  1. Introduced by Rep. Andy Meisner (D) on May 16, 2007, to impose licensure and regulation on interior designers, with $70 annual license fees. The bill is part of a legislative package comprised of House Bills 4770 to 4772.
    • Referred to the House Commerce Committee on May 16, 2007.
      • Reported in the House on October 9, 2007, with the recommendation that the substitute (H-1) be adopted and that the bill then pass.
    • Substitute offered in the House on October 11, 2007, to replace the previous version of the bill with one that revises various details, but does not change its substance. This version was subsequently superseded by another substitute with more changes. The substitute passed by voice vote in the House on October 11, 2007.
  2. Passed 72 to 35 in the House on October 11, 2007.
    Who Voted "Yes" and Who Voted "No"

  3. Received in the Senate on October 16, 2007.
    • Referred to the Senate Commerce & Tourism Committee on October 16, 2007.

Comments

Aw, isn't that precious? Rent-seeker explains he just wants to protect us.  by Anonymous Citizen on October 27, 2008 
Oh, the tragedy of a bad design. Oh, the tragedy (for current designers) of unrestricted competition.

Learn what the profession is...  by Anonymous Citizen on October 24, 2008 
I think everyone who has posted items pertaining to this needs a little education in Interior Design. It is not architecture or decorating. Educated Interior Designers learn about; builing codes, finishes that can either help in a building or harm people,space planning which isn't just about where to put a couch. Education and certification is extremely important. Decorators should still be able to tell a person what color to paint their living room, but there needs to be a line.

Alabama Interior Design Statute Unconstitutional  by Anonymous Citizen on October 13, 2007 
Supreme Court: Law that set up designer board unconstitutional
BY BOB JOHNSON

October 12, 2007


ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER


MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- The Alabama Supreme Court has ruled unconstitutional a state law that established a commission to license and regulate interior designers.

The court ruled Friday that the 2001 act is so broad that it requires people to be licensed as interior designers who simply offer advice on what color to paint a living room or what types of throw pillows to use.

The unanimous opinion, written by Justice Patti Smith, describes the act setting up the Alabama State Board of Registration for Interior Design as "overbroad and unreasonable."

The court upheld a ruling by Jefferson County Circuit Judge Helen Shores Lee. Lee had ruled in favor of Diane Burnett Lupo, a Birmingham interior decorator who was fined $1,500 by the design board for illegally working as an interior designer. Lupo had argued the services she provided to clients included offering advice on paint colors, accessories, fabrics and furniture.

Lupo's attorney, Mark Lee of Birmingham, said under the act of the Legislature, a person could be found guilty of a misdemeanor crime and sentenced to up to a year in prison if they offered simple advice such as what color paint to use.

He said Lupo had worked as an interior decorator for 22 years.

"This ruling means my client can keep supporting her family by telling clients what their living room colors ought to be," Lee said.

The attorney for the board, Matthew Beam of Montgomery, said he had not had time to study the opinion Friday.

"We are certainly going to take a look at what the court said. As a licensing board we will apply the court's guidance," Beam said.

In a separate opinion, Justice Tom Parker said the law setting up the commission interferes with the rights of people who want to offer interior decorating advice, but also violates the rights of people who want to hire an unlicensed person to help them decorate their home or office.

"If a homeowner or businessperson wants to express himself by decorating his home or his office in a certain way, and if that person believes Lupo can best provide the design that he desires, the state should not tell that person that he may not contract with Lupo merely because Lupo lacks state certification or an academic degree," Parker wrote.


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