No Design Legislation

Opposing interior design legislation everywhere

New Video – Free to Design: Florida Entrepreneurs Take On the Interior Design Cartel

New video about the lawsuit challenging Florida’s anticompetitive interior design law.

The Institute for Justice’s Clark Neily explains the growth of red tape and licensing laws which have led to an explosion of governmental controls on occupations that were never regulated before. Legislation has always been abused as a weapon to suppress competition, starting with attempting to prevent African Americans from getting a leg up, to now restricting many other people from working in the fields of their choice. It’s an ugly history that has been continued now as a tool of special interest groups who want to exclude others.

In fact, as David Harrington of Kenyon College explains, this sort of legislation is also most likely to exclude minorities and midcareer job changers. See “Designed to Exclude” for more information on this.

Can you say “discrimination”? And “antithesis of the American Dream”? Sure, I knew you could.

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September 3, 2009 Posted by | Florida, Texas | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Congrats, TX- HB2649 Amendment Practice Act Language Deleted!

Senator Averitt has agreed to remove the lighting design amendment from HB 2649! The crisis has been averted – for now. But this is going to come back later.

From the LightNow blog:

============================================

Message from Marsha Turner, IALD Exec. VP, on Texas HB2649

Excerpted from IALD Reflections, the newsletter of the IALD:

Thank you, all of you, who took the time to weigh in on this issue. Your efforts, and those of our colleagues in the entertainment lighting industry, and members of the ALA, ESTA, IES and many other organizations, have paid off. I am pleased that we were able to mobilize so quickly and in such concentrated fashion. This effort demonstrates very clearly the power of a collective voice.

Now that Senator Averitt has agreed to remove the language from the bill, we need to send heartfelt and sincere thanks to those Texas legislators who received our vociferous protests. May I impose upon each of you to craft an appropriate message and send it on behalf of yourself or your company? It will go a long way toward helping ease future relations with the Texas decision-makers when we go back to the table and continue our discussions with them.

No one thinks this is over yet; far from it. This portion of the saga has been concluded in our favor, and that’s a big victory because the situation would have been very different, and very difficult, had things gone the other way. We should not belittle or downplay the effort that it took to achieve this “stay of execution” because it took hundreds of people and significant coordination among IALD, the ALA, ESTA and other organizations to put their collective influence, and that of their members, into play. What was accomplished here has never before been attempted or accomplished by the IALD.

It is correct for us to “celebrate the moment” just as it is correct for us to be working with Senator Averitt and the other Texas legislators to participate in the work that will happen after this. Which we are; those conversations have already begun. We will of course keep the membership informed.

Congratulations to all of you for a truly significant achievement.

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It’s not over until it’s over, though. Craig DiLouie reports that he received a message explaining that Senator Averitt added this language to the bill because, “…residential builders… in [his] district had complained about people representing themselves as lighting designers, selling bad equipment that did not perform, and producing a loss for the builders. Apparently, the Senator had no idea that there was a legitimate profession called lighting design and that the bill would damage it”.

That said, the Senator still thinks there’s a need for regulation, so even though he’s deleting the current language from the bill, he’s going to add a requirement for the Texas Department of Licensing & Regulation to study the issue and propose some kind of regulation for the next legislative session two years from now.

Craig hopes that they will work with IALD on this, but obviously the entire design community has a stake in all of this, so it’s going to require ongoing work by all of us to keep the legislative wolf at bay. I would hope that IALD will join with all of the rest of the organizations already actively fighting anticompetitive design legislation such as NKBA, the Institute for Justice, IDPC, NAHB, and many others.

May 29, 2009 Posted by | Texas | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

TX Attempts to Pass Partial Practice Act/Lighting Design Amendment – Action Needed!

From Jennifer Perkins of the Institute for Justice:

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Things (as always) can be sudden and move quickly with regard to information on the legislative front. It now appears that Senator Kip Averitt is the original source of this amendment.

Please focus your efforts on contacting Senator Averitt ((512) 463-0122)) and Gov. Perry ((512) 463-2000) in order to stop this effort.

Also, please remember, while it is perfectly appropriate to be passionate and concerned in contacting lawmakers, it is also very important to be courteous and civil in order to be effective.

Thanks so much.
________________________________________
From: Jennifer Perkins
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2009 12:11 PM
To: (redacted)

Subject: ALERT: TX attempts to pass partial interior design practice act

Importance: High

Greetings, friends.

In an unfortunate turn of events, an amendment has been made to a bill in the Texas Legislature to implement a partial practice act that would affect interior designers. HB 2649 is an unrelated bill regarding insurance coverage (so be aware that the bill sponsor, Rep. Callegari, is NOT the source of this amendment). Sen. Deuell has used this bill as a vehicle for the amendment which would basically require you to have a license as either an architect or a landscape architect or to become a registered interior designer in order to create ANY plans or design work related to lighting and lighting fixtures indoors and outdoors.

If your do any lighting design work, you would have to be a registered interior designer (or licensed architect or landscape architect) to continue doing that work.

There is still time to stop this from becoming law, but it is IMPORTANT that you act now.

HB 2649 has already passed the House and Senate, but because different versions passed the to legislative bodies, a “Conference Committee” will meet to agree on the final bill language.

You can help by:

1. Contacting Senator Deuell’s office to let them know you OPPOSE the lighting design amendment to HB 2649—not the bill itself, but rather the amendment requiring licensure to prepare lighting design plans. 512-463-0102.

2. Contact the Senate and House leadership offices so that legislative leadership will know there is significant opposition to this amendment—they will appoint the members of the Conference Committee; also contact the Governor’s office:

a. Speaker of the House Rep. Strauss: (512) 463-1000
b. Lt. Governor David Dewhurst: (512) 463-0001
c. Governor Rick Perry: (512) 463-2000

3. Contact the Senator and Representative that are from your home district to let them know you OPPOSE the amendment to HB 2649 relating to lighting design work. Even if these folks are not on the Conference Committee, your representatives should be aware of legislation that will negatively impact their constituents. You can find out who your representatives are and how to contact them here: www.fyi.legis.state.tx.us.

These contacts should be made ASAP in order to have a significant impact on the amendment to HB 2649. Also, please share this with other individuals you know who may be affected, for example anyone involved in industrial lighting design, theater lighting design, etc.

Thank you!
Jennifer

Jennifer M. Perkins, Staff Attorney
Institute for Justice Arizona Chapter
398 South Mill Avenue, Suite 301 Tempe, Arizona 85281
(480) 557-8300 * jperkins@ij.org
Litigating for Liberty: www.ij.org/arizona

May 28, 2009 Posted by | Institute for Justice, Texas | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

TX Designers’ Constitutional Rights Restored!

Interior Design Protection Council

Congratulations!

No longer illegal to use title “Interior Designer!”

Celebrate restitution of your Constitutional right!

Members of the Texas design community:

Today, May 12th, Governor Rick Perry signed HB 1484 into law. This bill amends the current title act which previously restricted the use of the title “interior designer.”

YOU ARE NOW FREE TO USE THAT TITLE
WHICH ACCURATELY DESCRIBES THE WORK YOU DO!

The amended law will restrict only the title “registered interior designer” to those who qualify under the previously established guidelines.

This amendment was in direct response to the May 2007 lawsuit filed by the Institute for Justice challenging violation of Texas citizens’ First Amendment rights, and followed right on the heels of the ruling of the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ordering the Texas Board of Architectural Examiners to stop enforcing a state law that prohibits people who lawfully perform interior design services from referring to themselves as “interior designers.”

So go ahead, Texas designers — celebrate your freedom! It’s been a long time coming and you deserve it!

1. The Board is prevented from enforcing the restriction against the terms “interior design” and “interior designer.”
2. Restrictions against using these terms will no longer exist in Texas.

State of Texas’ violation of interior designers’ free speech rights is OVER!

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Thank you IJ, for restoring the rights of thousands of Texas designers!

We won this round but the fight is NOT over. We have reason to believe that TAID is still planning to introduce their practice act again next year. They just won’t take “NO” for an answer…

Help IDPC put their monopoly effort down for the count by
joining our team!

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us at info@IDPCinfo.org.

Patti Morrow
Executive Director
Interior Design Protection Council

IDPC is the only national organization solely dedicated to protecting the rights and livelihoods of the design community.
Please support our efforts!
Click here to become a member of IDPC.
Join Our Mailing List!

May 18, 2009 Posted by | Institute for Justice, Texas | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Is Your Interior Designer *Really* Putting Your Life at Risk?

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Reason.tv’s Nick Gillespie went looking for dead bodies, and for an explanation for why the state of Florida launched a legal case against Younts. State regulators demand that she obtain a license, a license she says she doesn’t need, a license that could cost her six years and hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Do licensing laws protect consumers from death and destruction or, as the Interior Design Protection Council argues, do they protect licensed designers from competition? Should Younts be stripped of the career it took her decades to build? Should President Obama be worried about his interior designer, the unlicensed Michael Smith? Watch the documentary below, then you decide…

Written and produced by Ted Balaker. Director of photography is Roger Richards.

April 2, 2009 Posted by | Alabama, ASID, Florida, Georgia, Interior Design Legislation Opposition, Interior Design Protection Council (IDPC), ncidq certification licensing, Texas | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

No Harm from Unregulated Interior Designers in Texas Says Marilyn Roberts

You can tell she knows she’s cornered. And this is despite actively soliciting examples – for two years.

Please Digg this!

March 17, 2009 Posted by | Institute for Justice, Texas | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

No Documented Cases of Unlicensed Designers Creating Safety Hazards

Thousands of designers in Texas rally against possible legislation that would prohibit unlicensed designers from doing commercial projects, and would put at least half of the state’s 10,000 designers out of business.

And Marilyn Roberts, ASID, the president of the Texas Association for Interior Design, which along with ASID is responsible for promoting anticompetitive legislation in Texas, also admitted that there is “no documented case she knows of in Texas where an unlicensed interior designer created a safety hazard“.

Read the full story and watch the video here: http://www.kxan.com/dpp/news/local/Interior_designers_rally_for_rights?disqus_reply=6433417#comment-6433417.

February 20, 2009 Posted by | Institute for Justice, Interior Design Legislation Opposition, Texas | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

ASID MEMBERS RESIGN IN PROTEST OF ASID LICENSING EFFORTS

We just received a copy of the letter below sent to ASID Headquarters. Thanks to the Interior Design Freedom Coalition http://www.interiordesignfreedom.org/blog.html for posting it.

Please see the links on this blog in the Interior Design Legislation Opposition section to the Interior Design Protection Council and the Interior Design Freedom Coalition for more information on licensing efforts and how to protect your real right to practice in your state, and how ASID efforts will put thousands of designers out of business.

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ASID RESIGNATIONS
-GROUP ONE-

December 19, 2008

Michael Alin, Executive Director
The American Society of Interior Designers
608 Massachusetts Ave., NE
Washington, D.C., 20002

Dear Mr. Alin:

Over the last several years, we have watched as ASID has recklessly spent our dues and MANDATORY legislative assessments on a failed policy falsely proclaiming to “raise the level of the profession” and to cull what you have decided are the “real designers” from those not following the path you dictate. The legislation you support has requirements so restrictive that most designers would not be able to comply and will therefore be denied the right to practice.

Over and over… we have watched as ASID’s president, members and board repeatedly mislead their own ASID colleagues about the EFFECT of legislation on our right to practice, while currying support from the very designers who would be put out of business by your legislative actions. And we have listened as Allied Members were described as the “Cash Cows” of the organization – too stupid to understand that we were being used to fund our own demise.

Over and over… we have watched as ASID betrayed its own ethics to push its own agenda – an ego-driven agenda that has the potential to destroy more than half of its own membership.

Over and over… we have listened as ASID members said sweetly, “We’re not trying to put you out of business.” [Subtext: as long as you forego your practice to go back to school for at least 2 years, do a supervised internship with an NCIDQ certified designer – if you can find one who also happens to be hiring – and intern from two to five years while being paid virtually nothing; then if you have any money left, pay about $2000 to take step workshops, purchase study materials, and take and pass the NCIDQ test (which is rarely passed on the first attempt), and then prove to the satisfaction of your own competitors that you actually are a designer, and comply with any regulations they happen to write.] But nobody’s trying to put you out of business; after all, there’s grandfathering. And from what we’ve seen of the way “grandfathering” is often written into the legislation, that’s just as bogus a claim as the rest of the pro-legislation argument.

Legislators have told us that representatives (either ASID and/or IIDA members) have misrepresented the content, objectives and design support for their legislation while governors of four states have clearly understood it to be anticompetitive and protective.

In states where practice acts have been enacted, designers have suffered terribly – persecuted for what they have done successfully for years, sustaining huge fines and legal fees for miniscule “infractions” and in some cases, bankrupted and driven out of the state in order to earn a living.

Florida designers bear witness to the travesty of your actions, and we hear more and more from them every day. The disgraceful behavior of Florida ASID members who deliberately work to expose and report their own members, as well as others, and help to put them out of business tells us what we need to know about ASID as an organization and about how legislation really works to
destroy designers’ rights to practice. And Florida is not the only state where this happens or has happened: try Alabama, Texas, New Mexico, Connecticut and others.

There are estimated to be between 200,000 and 400,000 interior designers in practice in the U.S. today. ASID claims membership of only about 20,000 practicing designers, the majority of
whom don’t even care about “raising the level of the profession”. Many are not even aware of your legislative agenda. They just want to practice design successfully as they always have.

We have personally spoken to Allied designers all across the country, and have found the vast majority to be opposed to your actions. As we’ve said before: the only designers who benefit from your tactics are the so-called professional designers who have passed the NCIDQ – and those are few and far between.

You do not represent independent designers as you have claimed, hence the title independent. They don’t want ASID’s interference in their right to practice, and have told us that they resent ASID’s efforts to dictate policy in which they have no say. Even ASID members are not welcome to disagree with your policies as the invitation to the Arkansas conference clearly shows, where attendees were carefully vetted to make sure that there would be no discordant voices.

ASID HAS NO RIGHT AND NO MANDATE TO DICTATE TO HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF DESIGNERS ALL ACROSS THIS COUNTY WHO WILL BE ALLOWED TO PRACTICE AND WHO WILL NOT. YOUR LEGISLATION IS BEING DEFEATED BECAUSE DESIGNERS DO NOT SUPPORT YOUR OBJECTIVES.

It is clear to us that ASID no longer advocates for all of its members. This is illustrated in the make-up of the board which is ponderously commercial, in the membership of your pro-legislation coalitions across the country, where the majority are often commercial designers and in your undue influence in the schools, where students are pushed toward architectural/commercial design and where residential design gets short shrift. Students have told us that ASID has misled them, pushing them into commercial/architectural design on the premise that jobs at the commercial or architectural firms would be awaiting them when they graduate, and that ASID would help them get those jobs.

Even before the economic downturn, commercial jobs were very hard to come by – by ASID’s own statistics, only 15% of the market – and the few students who manage to land those jobs do so without ASID’s promised-but too often undelivered assistance. Many students, unable to secure those jobs have wound up selling commercial furniture and other commercial products. And most residential designers cannot hire them, as designers who have, have told us that they can draft, but cannot do other things that are crucial to residential design.

ASID’s preferential conduct is also apparent in the way Allied Members are treated on the national website’s “Find a Designer” page, where potential clients searching for referrals are offered a choice of “Show Professionals Only” (listed as the default) vs. “Show All Practitioners” which they have to search for [note: this appears to just have been changed]. This is insulting and clearly shows a bias toward “professional” members, which is especially unjustifiable considering that many so-called “Professional” designers have never passed the NCIDQ test and have just been allowed in. Allied Members pay the majority of dues and mandatory legislation fees, are no less professional in their work, and do not deserve a lesser marketing effort than any other members.

Additionally, by promoting its single-entry method as the one true path to design, ASID has created a rift between practicing designers and those who take ASID’s EEE path, with the younger designers evincing rudely worded disrespect for their more experienced elders – a situation which is not conducive to job creation.

Interior Design is a creative field. Yet ASID is determined to legislate creativity out of it by restricting the many paths of entry into the field that have nurtured that creativity and vision for years, producing brilliant designers – down to one path that is engineered to produce – engineers.

In a failing economy such as this, ASID should be using all its resources to support and market designers, not to destroy them through legislation. And make no mistake, we completely understand your actions and your intent.

We are ashamed and deeply disappointed by this organization. We can no longer support a Society that deliberately destroys its own membership and endangers the future of design and designers in its unending desire for power and dominance. And because of your exclusive policies, we know there is no hope of changing the trajectory of your actions.

ASID had a slogan: PROTECTING YOUR RIGHT TO PRACTICE. You are, in fact, subverting your own raison d’etre by deliberately trying to destroy our right to practice. And that is unethical, unconscionable and unacceptable.

And so we are resigning.

Jacqueline Bazaar, #1533586, Pennsylvania
Margaret H. Benson, #1504190, Texas
Gayle Beyer, #1519494, Colorado
Loraine Brown, #1250453, Georgia
Christine Colman, #1534167, Washington
Ellen Fernandez, #1239917, Maryland
Diane Foreman, #61436, Oregon
Debbie Gersh, #1485135, Texas
Noreen Dunn Gottfried, #1502827, Pennsylvania
Carol Gumpert, 1550669, California
Karen K. Hartley, #75601, Georgia
Nancy Hartsing, #1559067, Arizona
Henrietta Heisler, #1859365, Pennsylvania
Elizabeth Kauermann, #97269, Pennsylvania
Nancy Phillips Leroy, #1231856, Pennsylvania
Christie Meehan, #1201627, Pennsylvania
Tonya Morrison, 1487732, Pennsylvania
Jayne Rosen, #78935, Pennsylvania
Rebecca Ruediger, #1250458, Missouri
Carly Sax, #1500172, Illinois
Anne-Marie H. Schimenti, #1504255, Florida
June Shea, #1486996, Virginia
Nadia T. Tanita, #1542001, Hawaii
Terri Temple, #18099, Connecticut
Mary Sue B. Wiedmer, #1215131, Pennsylvania

Resigned earlier this year for the above reasons:

Janice Onsa, Pennsylvania, former Allied Member
Diane Plesset, Oregon CMKBD, CID #5818, C.A.P.S., former ASID

cc: Bruce J. Brigham, President
Board of Directors:
Bruce Goff
Charrisse Johnston
Doug Hartsell
Lisa Henry
Mary G. Knopf
Rachelle Schoessler Lynn
Stephanie Clemons
Sybil J.B. Van Dijs
According to a survey by Interior Design Magazine as quoted in the New York Times, January 29, 1987

December 24, 2008 Posted by | California Designers Against Legislation (CADAL), Interior Design Legislation Opposition, Interior Design Protection Council (IDPC), ncidq certification licensing | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment