Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Geological Society of America opposes de-licensing of geologists in Arizona

The President of the Geological Society of America has weighed in on the legislative proposal to end registration of geologists in Arizona.   We received a copy of the letter Dr. Jon Price sent to Rep. Warren Petersen, the prime sponsor of HB2613:

1 March 2016

The Honorable Warren H. Petersen
Chairman, Committee on Commerce
Arizona House of Representatives
1700 West Washington Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85007

SUBJECT: HB 2613 concerning regulatory boards; licensing; revisions

Dear Chairman Petersen:

I write as the President of the Geological Society of America, a scientific society with over 26,000 members, many of whom are citizens of Arizona, to oppose the sections in proposed legislation (HB 2613) that would remove licensure of geologists in Arizona. The Geological Society of America has a position statement that is relevant to your deliberations about this legislation:
“Geoscientists have a fundamental role in the engineering and architectural design, planning, construction, and maintenance of infrastructure systems with respect to their relationship to local geology, hazards and the environmental setting.”
Related to this formal position statement is the following relevant recommendation and footnote:
“Governments at all levels are encouraged to incorporate licensed geologists or geological engineers in the infrastructure design and planning process.*
 *Licensure and certification are different in scope and implementation. Licensure has governmental authority and oversight; certification is conferred by a professional association. Certification may or may not include testing of knowledge.”
A copy of the full position statement is attached. Additionally, please note that there is no national professional organization that both certifies professional geologists (based on their verified educational background and employment history) and requires passage of a competency test as is required with licensure in a state.

Thank you for your consideration.

[signed] Jonathan G. Price
President, Geological Society of America

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