Irrigation Association Position Statement on Licensing for Landscape Irrigation Professionals
Licensing irrigation professionals promotes the protection of public health, safety and general welfare; supports the environmental, economic and social benefits of cultivated landscapes; and helps to ensure the efficient use of water resources.
The Irrigation Association supports only state and provincial licensing initiatives that are embraced by the state’s irrigation industry. The IA recognizes that different forms of licensing may be appropriate for different states and provinces and that one single approach may not work among different states. With respect to any state law, the IA supports inclusion of the following components:
- Pre-emption of Local Licensing: The IA supports licensing bills that pre-empt local licensing laws in favor of a single statewide system.1
- Competency Assessment: The IA supports competency assessment as part of the licensing process. When competency assessment is used, the IA Select Certified program, which is the full set of IA certification programs, is supported.
- Continuing Education: The IA supports continuing education as a part of the licensing process. When continuing education is used, the IA supports the Select Certified program.
- Enforcement: Licensing does not work where it is not enforced. The IA supports language in licensing bills that ensures proper financing for and the workability of enforcement. Specific language is necessary to mandate enforcement against unlicensed individuals and mandate that enforcement funds stay within the department overseeing the license. A reasonable permit fee and registration fee is required to provide dedicated funding to support enforcement.
- Board or Commission: In order to ensure representation of the irrigation industry, it is necessary for the board or commission overseeing the license to include irrigation and practicing landscape irrigation professionals in its membership.
The Irrigation Association continues to work closely with affiliated organizations to develop these initiatives and licensing programs.
Adopted by the IA Board of Directors, July 2011
1 Local licensing refers to licenses required by any local government entities, including counties, cities, boroughs, townships, water authorities, school districts and conservation districts.