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RULE PROPOSALS
VOLUME 44, ISSUE 23
ISSUE DATE: DECEMBER 3, 2012
LAW AND PUBLIC SAFETY
DIVISION OF CONSUMER AFFAIRS
NEW JERSEY STATE BOARD OF PROFESSIONAL ENGINEERS AND LAND SURVEYORS


44 N.J.R. 2990(a)



Proposed Amendment: N.J.A.C. 13:40-15.14

Continuing Education Requirements

Authorized By: New Jersey State Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, Paul Ray, Acting Executive Director.

Authority: N.J.S.A. 45:8-66.

Calendar Reference: See Summary below for explanation of exception to calendar requirement.

Proposal Number: PRN 2012-178.

Submit comments by February 1, 2013 to:

Paul Ray, Acting Executive Director
New Jersey State Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors
124 Halsey Street
P.O. Box 45015
Newark, New Jersey 07101

The agency proposal follows:

Summary

The Home Inspection Advisory Committee (the Committee) of the New Jersey State Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors (the Board) is proposing to amend N.J.A.C. 13:40-15.14(d)3 to increase to 20 the maximum number of continuing education units that home inspectors may be granted in each biennial license renewal cycle through completion of correspondence, Internet, or other distance learning courses approved by the Committee. Under existing N.J.A.C. 13:40-15.14(d)3, licensees may not earn more than 10 continuing education units per biennial cycle through the completion of correspondence, Internet, or other distance learning courses.

Home inspectors are required to complete 40 continuing education units every two years in order to renew their licenses. By amending this paragraph to allow licensees to complete half of their continuing education requirement through distance learning, the Committee is striking a balance. Licensees will still benefit from 20 hours of in-person [page=2991] instruction, but they will also be able to significantly reduce their continuing education tuition and transportation expenses. Licensees who opt to take advantage of the proposed amendment may save on tuition expenses because there are a number of free or low-cost continuing education classes available on the Internet. These licensees will also save on travel expenses because they will be able to attend class while in their homes or offices, thus saving on gasoline, tolls, and wear and tear on their vehicle. The State will also benefit by a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

As the Board has provided a 60-day comment period on this notice of proposal, this notice is excepted from the rulemaking calendar requirement pursuant to N.J.A.C. 1:30-3.3(a)5.

Social Impact

The Board believes that the proposed amendment will have a positive social impact upon home inspectors because they will be able to complete half of their continuing education requirement through correspondence, Internet, and other distance learning courses approved by the Committee, thus saving hours of travel time that could be spent on their businesses or with their families. This proposed amendment would have no adverse effect on the public because licensees would be required to complete the same number of continuing education credits for the renewal of their licenses. Moreover, because the proposed amendment would permit home inspectors to avoid driving to and from course locations, the public would benefit from a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and from the savings of thousands of gallons of gasoline.

Economic Impact

The Board believes that the proposed amendment will have a positive economic impact on home inspectors because they will be able to save on tuition and transportation costs. There are many continuing education Internet courses that are available to home inspectors at low or no cost. Licensees will also be able to save money on gasoline, tolls, and wear and tear to their automobiles. Licensees might also be able to use the time saved commuting to class for income-producing activity. While the proposed amendment may not have a direct economic benefit on consumers, it may have an indirect economic benefit, to the extent that continuing education tuition and transportation costs are reflected in home inspection fees. The Board further believes that the proposed amendment may have a small impact on continuing education providers. Continuing education providers that develop distance learning programs may be able to offset any loss of revenues from decreased attendance at live events. Although the tuition for distance learning programs may be lower than for live events, distance learning programs may attract more students than live events because of their convenience.

Federal Standards Statement

A Federal standards analysis is not required because the proposed amendment is subject to State statutory requirements and is not subject to any Federal requirements or standards.

Jobs Impact

The Board does not believe that the proposed amendment will result in the creation or loss of jobs in the State.

Agriculture Industry Impact

The proposed amendment will have no impact on the agriculture industry in the State.

Regulatory Flexibility Statement

Since the approximately 700 home inspectors are individually licensed by the Board, they may be considered "small businesses" under the Regulatory Flexibility Act (the Act), N.J.S.A. 52:14B-16 et seq. While the proposed amendment would not change the total number of continuing education units required, it would permit home inspectors to fulfill more of their continuing education unit requirements through correspondence, Internet, and other distance learning courses. The economic impact on small businesses will be the same as on all other businesses. The Board does not believe that licensed home inspectors will need to employ any professional services to comply with the requirements of the proposed amendment. The proposed amendment would not impose new reporting requirements on licensees. The Board does not believe that there will be any significant, additional economic impact upon licensees as a result of the proposed amendment. Rather, the Board believes that there may be a reduction in the economic burden on licensees as a result of the proposed amendment. The Board believes that the proposed amendment should be applied uniformly to all licensees regardless of the size of the business.

Housing Affordability Impact Analysis

The proposed amendment will have an insignificant impact on affordable housing in New Jersey and there is an extreme unlikelihood that the rule would evoke a change in the average costs associated with housing because the proposed amendment concerns permitting home inspectors to complete a greater number of their required continuing education units through the successful completion of correspondence, Internet, and other distance learning courses approved by the Committee.

Smart Growth Development Impact Analysis

The proposed amendment will have an insignificant impact on smart growth and there is an extreme unlikelihood that the rule would evoke a change in housing production in Planning Areas 1 or 2, or within designated centers, under the State Development and Redevelopment Plan in New Jersey because the proposed amendment concerns permitting home inspectors to complete a greater number of their required continuing education units through the successful completion of correspondence, Internet, and other distance learning courses approved by the Committee.

Full text of the proposal follows (additions indicated in boldface thus; deletions indicated in brackets [thus]):

SUBCHAPTER 15. HOME INSPECTION ADVISORY COMMITTEE

13:40-15.14 Continuing education requirements

(a)-(c) (No change.)

(d) Credit for continuing education shall be granted as follows for each biennial registration period:

1.-2. (No change.)

3. Successful completion of correspondence, Internet, or other distance learning courses approved by the Committee: one continuing education unit per hour of course instruction as determined by the Committee to a maximum of [10] 20 units per biennial registration period;

4.-7. (No change.)

(e)-(i) (No change.) ES







 

If you wish to submit comments about this rule proposal, please fill out the form below. When you have completed the form, click the "Submit Your Comments" button below.

Last Name :

First Name:

Professional Organization, Association or Affiliation, if any:

E-Mail Address:

Comments:

       

   
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