Category Archives: California Interior Design Regulation

CALIFORNIA ARCHITECTS LOBBY FOR END AROUND CERTIFIED INTERIOR DESIGNERS

UPDATE 6/26

UPDATE 6/30 SEE BELOW

Seems the California Council of the AIA (or a related chapter) is trying to corner the market on the permit review process in California under the guise of assisting over worked/over burdened  and under staffed building permit departments.  California Assembly Bill 2192, ( http://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billNavClient.xhtml?bill_id=201320140AB2192  )which is currently in committee, proposes a limited pilot program that will allow permit documents to be reviewed for approval by other architects…….That is, where local codes require that permit drawings be stamped and sealed by an architect that another architect, on behalf of  the local jurisdiction,  can review and approve those documents to be permitted…..It is unclear to me how a set of non-seismic/non-structural permit drawings signed and sealed by a Certified Interior Designer will be considered under such a scheme….but I can imagine that since the fox will have the key to the hen-house door that the cost of entry might go way up.

Yes this is only a limited proposal and the bill may never move out of committee but to an anti-government/less government mindset this appears to be a brilliant proposal.  Many building/permit departments already employ architects as plan reviewers and building officials.  If successful the quasi-privatization of local building departments could become a trend…..a stretch maybe but hey this is California….anything can happen and if it catches on Katie bar the hen-house door.

BUT……………..besides the potential issues of bias and favoritism..not that that would ever happen amongst fellow professionals….it just seems that the AIA is using this to idea to monopolize the building permit process which cannot be positive for California’s already sketchy CID permitting process.

http://www.interiorsandsources.com/interior-design-news/interior-design-news-detail/articleid/17657/title/asid-helps-to-defeat-california-assembly-bill-2192.aspx

AND FROM THE CALIFORNIA  AIA-

AB 2192 (Melendez), the AIACC-sponsored legislation to create a pilot program for three local jurisdictions to implement an alternative plan review process for residential design, has been dropped and is now dead. While the author’s office and the AIACC were confident we would be able to move this bill out of the Legislature and to the Governor for his consideration, the good question the author asked was why move the bill if no local jurisdiction has been found that is willing to implement the alternative review process?

Our bill would have implemented a pilot project in three local jurisdictions that would have allowed residential plans prepared by architects to be reviewed by another architect, and that “peer review” would have been in lieu of plan review by the local jurisdiction. Thus, a building permit would have been issued upon the submittal of “peer reviewed” plans.

Many groups opposed this bill, including the California Building Officials, California Architects Board (oppose unless amended), and several interior design groups.

We, and the author’s office, were unable to find any local building department interested in becoming a part of this pilot project, causing the author to question the need to move the bill.

Initially, the bill would have given all local building departments the authority to implement this alternative plan review program, at its discretion, but we had to amend it to a pilot program for three jurisdictions in order to get the bill out of the State Assembly, which we did on a 72-4 vote. Unfortunately, with that amendment, we needed to find local jurisdictions in a short amount of time who were willing to be a part of this program, and we were not able to do that.

AIACC staff will work with the AIA Members on the AIACC Advocacy Advisory Committee to consider whether we should work with local jurisdictions in an effort to try this again next year.  http://www.aiacc.org/2014/06/25/legislative-update-june-2014/

INTERIOR DESIGNER vs. INTERIOR DESIGNER- WHAT’S THE DIFFERENCE?

membership-780x350image from http://idc-oregon.org/

Can Interior Designers ever distinguish themselves from Interior Designers in order to advance the profession via government regulation?

Okay read that question again….does it make sense to you?  Well from where I am sitting it makes no sense but yet that is what numerous well intended interior designers are trying to do by pursuing government regulation. These interior designers freely invest copious amounts of time and energy into the grassroots effort to achieve recognition by their state legislatures.  They have my respect simply because they want to improve the status of the profession.

However, since the term “interior designer” is not a protected title anybody with a pulse can call themselves an ” interior designer” and many people do- qualified or not, professional or not, educated or not, breathing or not.  Unfortunately it is typically the unqualified, innately talented self-proclaimed interior designer that society equates with the term “interior designer”. Why should they support regulation of a profession (if they even consider it one) that requires no particular training, education or skill?  Answer is they don’t.

You cannot expect the general public, vis-a-vis our policy and law makers, to understand the difference between an interior designer and an interior designer…..no way- no how.  (Case in point: http://www.designntrend.com/articles/10266/20140118/kourtney-kardashian-shows-amazing-interior-design-skills-alice-wonderland-themed.htm)

index

If you do not see, or agree that there is, a semantic barricade then there is nothing else here for you to see….move along.  If however, you recognize that there is a conflict here please read on.  Let’s figure out a way around this impediment to our professional advancement.

So what we have is an intractable bi-polar divide within the profession.  Each side has clearly stated their platforms for ID regulation and against ID regulation.  You and I may be able to sort out the truth from the lies but how can we expect our policymakers to sort through the flack to see our side of the profession?  Unfortunately as I have posted 300+ times before they can’t.

Those in favor of ID regulation say “Licensing provides a level of accountability that is otherwise non-existent.   It is for consumer protection.”

Those who oppose ID regulation say “There is no consumer outcry demanding interior design legislation”

Those in favor say “Licensing interior designers will allow the qualified to work to the fullest potential of their training and education”

The opposition says “occupational licensing reduces employment growth, contributes to unemployment and increases costs to consumers,”

The pro legislation side claims we are educated, trained and tested  to sign and seal construction drawings to procure building permits.

While the anti-regulation contingent claims that architects already do this and there is no need.  Unfortunately the AIA agrees….I digress.

One interior designer says this and another interior designer claims this……How can we clarify this for society and our policy makers? Since the advent of the Locke v. Shore ruling in 2010  http://ij.org/locke-v-shore   the profession has attempted a mighty policy tack to distinguish our regulation attempts by using the title “Certified Interior Designer” or “Registered Interior Designer”.  I have asked this before? Why do we need legislation to do this?

We have to decide if we are pursuing regulation to distinguish ourselves from the innately qualified thereby limiting that competition or if we pursuing regulation as a right to practice issue.  Two very different end games requiring two very different game plans. Let’s figure that out first huh.

Yet the effort to distinguish the profession by use of overly subtle title nuances continues.  Seems like a lot of effort for little to no gain. How can we change this?

The Oregon interior design coalition http://idc-oregon.org/  for instance has proposed legislation in that state that distinguishes “Commercial Interior Design” from “Interior Design” http://professionalinteriordesigner.com/2012/01/27/oregon-commercial-interior-designers-push-for-practice-license/
Seems like a reasonable way to distinguish those that practice in code regulated environments vs. residential interior decorators/designers but there is no legitimate profession called “commercial interior design”.  Again the Oregon IDC has my support for their effort to advance the profession but I cannot support such semantic cleaving simply to avoid confusion.

So how can we present a professional domain that is Interior Design- but isn’t?

Well we can start by regulating ourselves. If we co-opt the term “Registered Interior Designer” BEFORE we pursue any legislation to regulate the term we do not have distinguish ourselves from “interior designers”.  If they have not earned the right to “Register” themselves in the free market…then they should not have any issues with those who have so proven their baseline competence to become “Registered”and ultimately “licensed” thereby rendering their anti regulation competition concerns moot.  In other words we need to create a professional identity that is clearly not interior design and is not performed by “interior designers”.  Whoa you may have to think about that one again.

Register first then pursue legislation to protect the term and the practice.

Which will take less time…trying to distinguish ourselves politically and legally via Uncle Sam or distinguishing ourselves in the public domain first then pursuing legislation based on that self-regulated title and practice?

My money is on the latter.  Hope I am around long enough to confirm it.

P.S. Okay if you are scratching your head I can’t blame you.  Again if you do not agree that this is an extremely nuanced and convoluted (by our own doing) issue then you probably are laughing this diatribe off…..at least you are laughing.  Others of you are probably thinking “isn’t legislating the title ‘Registered’ Interior Designer the easiest and most direct way to distinguish ourselves from our interior design brethren and consequently redefine the profession of “interior design” to be what we want it to be- isn’t that what we are doing? It seems to be working.”  Well no..it’s not working.  Hence this blog.

Architects are all licensed….why can’t we follow their lead?

Okay here’s another way to look at it.  Prior to the regulation of the occupation we know as “Architecture” as practiced by “Architects” they (architects) had…ohhh…about 500 years of proving their value to society. They became a learned profession in which the title “Architect” garnered immediate respect and those who practiced “architecture” without the prerequisite education, apprenticeship and examination became rarer as the profession developed, one and two, they were quickly outed and reprimanded by the professional domain of “architects” either legally, professionally or in dark alleys.  Ultimately over time architects came to legally own the title of architect, at least within the built environment.  The general public came to understand this and generally accepted it. 

We do not have that luxury. The general public has no idea what we do or why we deserve legal recognition.  Because we do not legally own the term “interior design” and in my humble opinion we never will….we cannot make it what we want it to be simply by creating title regulation.  However, who’s to say that in 500 years we may not have worn down the innately qualified self proclaimed interior designers into resignation…..”all right all right you can have it….we’ll just call ourselves interior decorators and let you have the title to be you own...” Sorry….that aint gonna happen- not even in 500 years.   

So we have to concede that interior designers will never be able to own the term interior design and make it their own, legally politically or professionally. 

Time to consider a new paradigm.   The one I suggest above may not be the best solution but if you agree that there is a problem then I have accomplished something.  If you don’t see this I hope you can comment and let me know. THANKS FOR READING

4 MORE YEARS….4 MORE YEARS!

http://www.asid.org/content/asid-announces-passing-california-senate-bill-308

Looks like the CID’ers in California get four more years to practice…..and four more years to convince state building officials that they are in fact qualified to sign and seal CD’s for limited scope code regulated interior work. 

And that the CID credential is more than just a title.

Nobody cares about signing and sealing work that does not absolve an independent interior designer from hiring another licensed design professional simply to obtain permission to see their work to fruition. 

The requirement for transparency and open meetings was brought on by ASID. So it will be interesting to see how CCIDC and ASID play in the sandbox. 

PROUD TO DISPLAY THE NEW NCIDQ CREDENTIAL

Introducing New Benefit For Active Certificate Holders

On July 15, 2013 the appellation “NCIDQ” and a unique mark will be available for use as an additional benefit for active certificate holders. After completing the terms and conditions on their MyNCIDQ online account, active NCIDQ Certificate holders will have the option to sign their names “First Name Last Name, NCIDQ” and/or use a unique NCIDQ logo in their professional materials, which may be downloaded from the same online account.  Active NCIDQ Certificate holders are those individuals who are current with their annual renewal payment, and in addition to the benefits already funded by the annual renewal fees, helps support NCIDQ Examination development and operations to maintain the validity and integrity of the series of tests.

Kim Ciesynski, NCIDQ Examination Board President, praises the move, saying “This new option for all certificate holders is a great opportunity for interior designers/interior architects to promote the NCIDQ credential they have worked so hard to earn, and to market themselves as successfully passing the rigorous standards tested by the NCIDQ Examination. The NCIDQ Examination is developed according to credible industry standards and we take great care to maintain its validity.  Therefore, we are very proud of our certificate holders and so pleased that they will now be able to demonstrate that they incorporate the highest standards of health, safety and human welfare in their daily practice. Certificate holders have spent years educating themselves, earning work experience and studying for the NCIDQ Examination.  They deserve the ability to showcase their hard-won and unique achievement.”

The Council for Interior Design Qualification, Inc., the corporate structure that provides resources to develop the NCIDQ Examination, is confident in the skills of those professionals who hold the NCIDQ Certificate, and is thrilled to promote those interior designers/interior architects who are the best examples of what the NCIDQ Examination stands for: health, safety and welfare within the spaces we use daily.

P.S. July 16: When I checked my Google Search results this morning I was expecting to see at least one press worthy item on the new credential. Instead Clare Danes mutters in Vogue that she thought about becoming an interior designer and the blogosphere ignites with joy;

Claire Danes, Interior Designer? http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/179483-claire-danes-interior-designer/

Why Claire Danes considered an interior design career http://wonderwall.msn.com/tv/why-claire-danes-considered-an-interior-design-career-25701.gallery

Would Claire Danes Be an Interior Designer Right Now if ‘Homeland’ Hadn’t Come Along? http://tv.yahoo.com/blogs/emmys/would-claire-danes-be-an-interior-designer-right-now-if–homeland–hadn-t-come-along–002810920.html

The NCIDQ credential is a much needed change for the profession but evidently we have a long, long way to go.

The Saga of California Senate Bill 308

Evidently the A.I.A. was just testing its cannons.

Looks like it’s status quo for California CID’ers

http://www.ccidc.org/eNews/sb308-3rd-bulletin.html

The stakeholder meetings, if they happen, should be televised for the public record.

CALIFORNIA CERTIFIED INTERIOR DESIGNERS UNDER ATTACK….OR ARE THEY?

I’m back.

Okay follow this missive from the CCIDC regarding California Senate Bill 308 and its language that the CCIDC says is detrimental to the profession:

http://ccidc.org/eNews/sb308-2nd-bulletin.html

Okay now read this web post by the Interior Design Coalition of California claiming that there is no need for concern:

http://www.idc-ca.org/idcc-news/templates/featured.aspx?articleid=210&zoneid=22

I find the IDCC claim regarding the supposed AIA backed amendment to SB-308 that-

As part of this process, an amendment was considered and is being interpreted as an attempt to deregulate the interior design profession. Upon closer review with legal counsel, we have found this NOT to be the case”

troubling not only in that it contradicts the CCIDC claim that the current CID model will be

DISASTROUS for Certified Interior Designers and any non certified designers including those doing kitchens and baths!”

it also does not tell us why their legal counsel reached this decision.  Are we to go on faith here?

Well I came back to call BULLS**T! Somebody is not telling the whole story here and for either organization to claim otherwise is extremely troubling.  The pissing match in California is growing old it’s time to;

GET OVER IT- TELL US THE WHOLE STORY-GET ON THE SAME PAGE AND MAKE THIS WORK!

No I do not have a dog in this hunt per se but we all suffer the consequences of the fallout from your pissy fits.

GOOD GRIEF.

P.S. California SB-308 will be brought before committee this morning at 9:00 AM  (PST)….Listen to the great debate here;

http://www.calchannel.com/live-webcast/

P.S. The hearing was rescheduled for July 2nd, listen to it here;

http://abp.assembly.ca.gov/hearings

I Pledge Allegiance to One Profession Under Uncle Sam With Liberty and Justice for all.

Okay so my previous post regarding California’s voluntary private interior design certification as it relates to the regulatory process common in the other 49 states (and related districts) got bogged down in minutiae.  I will take the blame for tossing out some poorly worded opinions that others felt compelled to argue.  Feel free to read the previous post for some interesting historical perspective on this topic.

Ultimately I hope you become informed as that is the goal of this blog. If I offend in that effort….oh well.

My question still stands unanswered;

Where do you see the CCIDC regulatory model as it fits in an effort to create a unified nationwide professional interior design domain with one credential, one professional organization with one objective, one accepted education/experience/examination professional validation process and one regulatory goal- that is to be considered peers with other REGISTERED/REGULATED BUILDING DESIGN PROFESSIONS?

Here is a hint for anybody willing to chime in……

The easiest answer is “there is no effort to create a unified nationwide professional interior design domain with one credential, one professional organization with one objective, one accepted education/experience/examination professional validation process and one regulatory goal- that is to be considered peers with other registered/regulated building design professionals”. If that is your answer then the entire freakin’ query is moot and we have just wasted an inordinate amount of time and effort. You are welcome to go forth and prosper in your ill defined, disrespected, misunderstood and undervalued professional(?) efforts.

If however, you support the notion that it is in our collective best interest to at least attempt to create a unified nationwide professional interior design domain with one credential, one professional organization with one objective, one accepted education/experience/examination professional validation process and one regulatory goal then you must consider how we are currently going about it. That includes an honest assessment of voluntary/private self-regulation models amongst other trivial issues such as what we call ourselves, how we define ourselves and who should advocate for us. So with that I will shut up and step aside. If anybody is willing to take a stab at answering my question above I promise not to pick your answer apart…….no really.

P.S. Is there room for both models? Should the other 49 states pursue/convert to a private regulatory model?

Don’t make me answer my own questions

P. P. S. Good to see that the CCIDC Director (Doug Stead) likes the anti-regulation efforts of the Interior Design Protection Council. That should tell you where he stands on the issue of nationwide ID regulation; http://www.facebook.com/pages/Interior-Design-Protection-Council/324844676913?ref=ts Begs the question- why does the regulation of ID in other states concern Mr. Stead and the CCIDC?