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May 30th, 2012 6:11 pm
Got a License to Work?

In a recent report and video, the Institute for Justice gives an excellent summary of how government licensing requirements to enter occupations like interior design, massage therapy, or shampooing are raising time and cost barriers to people who just want to work.

In this video IJ research director Dick Carpenter shares the results of a study of 102 low to middle income jobs (i.e. not doctors and lawyers) that impose on average require would-be workers to: (1) pay $209 in fees, (2) pass an exam, and (3) endure 275 days of training, or the equivalent of about 9 months.  All this before earning a paycheck!

IJ also notes that burdensome licensing requirements have not been shown to protect public health and safety.  Rather, they increase costs to consumers and keep would-be competitors out of legally protected (i.e. licensed) industries.

As the IJ video and study show, not every regulatory problem is a federal creation.  State lawmakers have an easy method for spurring job growth and entrepreneurial activity – reduce or eliminate licensing requirements so that citizens can get working.

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