“The Uniform Accountancy Act is one of the best ways to refute ALEC and other such groups,” advised NASBA Director of Legislative and Regulatory Affairs John Johnson. “These groups don’t know what we have done to promote uniformity, to remove barriers for professionals to move across state lines, etc.” Mr. Johnson said he will be addressing the National Conference of State Legislatures in December to explain what the Accountancy Boards do. He urged the State Boards to use the UAA as a framework for their laws and to reach out to NASBA for a comparison of their state laws with the UAA. He told the Annual Meeting that 49 jurisdictions have now adopted the new definition of “attest” and 25 jurisdictions have firm mobility.

Organizations continue to file legislation dedicated to limiting the size and scope of government, including ALEC, the Institute for Justice, Americans for Prosperity, the Mercatus Center, the Cato Institute and the Goldwater Institute. Mr. Johnson said some of these groups consider occupational licensing as a last resort. To educate legislators on the importance of accountancy licensing, the Accountancy Stakeholders Working Group has been formed including James Corley executive director of the Arkansas State Board of Accountancy, Ronald Gitz of the Society of Louisiana CPAs, Nicola Neilon member of the Nevada State Board of Accountancy, Tammy Velasquez of the Accountants Coalition, and Emily Walker of the Virginia Society of CPAs. This joint group has been created to tell the accountancy story, Mr. Johnson said.

Although HR 6515, the Occupational Licensing Board Antitrust Damages Relief Act of 2018, was filed by Representatives K. Michael Conaway and Lamar Smith, it did not pass out of committee because of late filing (see sbr 8/18). However, Mr. Johnson said it is likely to be filed early in the new 2019 Congress

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