by Abbie Goodman, MALSCE Chief of External Affairs
This Board of Registration meeting was held by conference call. Ken Anderson, PLS, has been appointed to the Board of Registration. He replaced Dennis Drumm, PLS, who had been serving with an expired term. At a future in-person, the Board will recognize Dennis and thank him for his more than 20 years of service on the Board of Registration.
- The next Board Meeting Date is April 30, 2020, probably by conference call.
- COVID-19: DPL’s Action Plan for Staffing and Walk-in’s: Division of Professional Licensure Walk-in Window Closed to the Public Effective March 27, 2020
- NCEES Cancellation of Exams: NCEES has cancelled the April 2020 exams and will be posting this information and contacting students. They are not yet sure about plans for the October exam.
- EXECUTIVE ORDER ON BUSINESS LICENSE REGISTRATION: On March 18, 2020 Governor Baker issued an executive order extending the registration of certain licensed trades and professions businesses. Link to order. Massachusetts PE and PLS licenses are due to expire on June 30, 2020, so licensees will be notified by mail or email about the need to renew online. We expect to receive more information about this and will share with MALSCE members.
Board Counsel Legal Report from Sheila York: No change in these items, due to COVID-19 issues and leadership changes at DPL announced last month (also below in this report): Status update on proposed Continuing Professional Competency (CPC) regulations, Use of the Title Engineer (and Surveyor), Updating the “Professional Practice, A Guide to the Practice of Architecture, Engineering, and Land Surveying in Massachusetts.” Update on draft language regarding 250 CMR 5.01(2)
This may become a virtual event on Zoom, but please do sign up if you can help: MALSCE Needs Your Help to Advocate at the State House on Dig Safe, Infrastructure Funding and More. Engineers, Land Surveyors, Public Works Professionals and other design professionals will meet with Massachusetts state legislators at the State House on May 14, 2020. Join us for this fun event at the State House. Register on Survey Monkey by May 1 for this important day. More information and the Registration Link
As of February 28, 2020, S. 1392, An Act Relative to Public Safety in Excavation was reported favorably out of the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security. This bill, along with many others, in currently in the Senator Clerk's office. We expect this bill to be sent to the Senate Committee on Ways and Means soon. At that time, we'll be asking MALSCE members for help to move this bill
Background: Link to Scott Cameron's Testimony .On December 17, 2019, MALSCE leader Scott Cameron, PLS represented MALSCE and ACEC/MA to testify in support of
Contact your Massachusetts Legislators and ask them to support our Dig Safe Bill
Sample letter for you to modify and email and mail to your State Representative and your State Senator on either the House bill, HB 2815 or the Senate bill, SB 1392
As noted above, S. 1392, An Act relative to public safety in excavation had hearing before the Joint Committee on Public Safety and Homeland Security on December 17, 2019 at the Massachusetts State House,
We continue to express support for: S. 1392, An Act relative to public safety in excavation
The House version of this bill: H.2815, An Act relative to improving public safety in excavation, was reported out favorably from the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy in late July. The bill is now in the House Committee on Ways and Means.
To view the fact sheet on the bill from our May 2019 Engineers and Land Surveyors Day at the State House, click here.
If you have questions, contact Abbie Goodman.
On October 11, 2019, the DPU issued a ‘Straw Proposal,’ which “represents the Department’s analysis of the comments received and establishes specific criteria for the use of professional engineers in relation to natural gas engineering plans, work, or services that could pose a material risk to public safety. In particular, the Straw Proposal delineates how natural gas companies are to use professional engineers on complex projects and defines the types of complex projects that warrant the use of professional engineers. The Department may initiate a formal rulemaking proceeding after reviewing the comments submitted pursuant to this Order.“
The original Straw Proposal, the DPU order on this matter and comments received on this matter through November 11, 2019, can be found in the DPU electronic file room. See below for instructions.
To see the comments received through the November 11, 2019 reply comments period, Go to the DPU Filing Room then click on Dockets/Filings, then choose Dockets by Number, Then enter Docket 19-34
People can email their own questions about their own individual work to firstname.lastname@example.org
On April 17, 2019, the City launched a registration portal for lobbyists in Boston. Boston's municipal lobbying ordinance aims to further promote good governance and transparency in the city and requires lobbyists, lobbyist entities and lobbying clients to register with the Boston City Clerk's Office. Additional information and registration fees are available online.
MALSCE's External Affairs Chief and ACEC/MA Executive Director Abbie Goodman is working in coalition with NAIOP and other business associations on issues of concern to design professionals.
In mid-August, the Municipal Lobbying Compliance Commission, created under the ordinance, requested comments from lobbyists, lobbyist entities and clients subject to the ordinance, as the Commission develops regulations to interpret, implement and enforce the ordinance. The Commission planned to finalize regulations prior to the December 15, 2019 registration deadline for the 2020 registration year, but that has been delayed. Here is the link to the letter filed by ACEC/MA,
The Boston Lobbying Ordinance uses a very broad definition for lobbying that may include some work done by engineers, land surveyors and other design professionals working on public and private sector projects in Boston. ACEC/MA, working in coalition with the Massachusetts Nonprofit Network, Greater Boston Real Estate Board, NAIOP and others, is seeking clarifications and guidance on this issue that it will share with MALSCE leadership.
Transportation Revenue Debate Summary - Debate on this bill, formerly H. 4508, concluded in the House on 3/5/2020. This bill now moves to the Massachusetts Senate.
The new bill is now H. 4530
Section 11 of the bill would edit the list of exemptions in the state’s sales tax law (Chapter 64H of the Massachusetts General Laws) to add “sales of rolling stock used by common carriers to transport goods in interstate commerce.”
Similar language (in Section 14 of the new bill) would also exempt “storage, use or other consumption of rolling stock, used by common carriers to transport goods in interstate commerce” from the state’s 6.25% use tax, which applies to equipment purchased out-of-state. Under current law, the 6.25% sales tax on a $150,000 truck purchase would generate $9,375 in revenue for the Commonwealth’s Transportation Trust Fund.
In a prepared statement, Kevin Weeks, the executive director of the Trucking Association of Massachusetts, said that 37 other states already exempt truck sales from their sales taxes, and wrote that “the trucking industry in Massachusetts has been in decline as many trucking companies have gone out of business or moved to other states.” The statement from Weeks also notes the 9-cent increase to the diesel fuel tax, which will land squarely on his industry, and argued that eliminating the tax on new trucks would give fleet owners an incentive to operate “newer, cleaner, and safer trucks in the Commonwealth.”
The House did not include proposed amendments that would have scrapped or blunted several of the tax and fee hikes or an amendment that would have repealed the gas, corporate and vehicle sales tax sections of the bill if and when surtax on household income above $1 million takes effect
Transportation Finance bill
Amendments can be found here: https://malegislature.gov/Bills/191/H4508/Amendments/House - they were due by 5 pm today; now we need to review 83 amendments to see if we have any concerns – please let me know ASAP on Monday, if you see any problems!
House will be debating the bill on Wednesday (3/4)
Transportation Bond bill
Background: On July 25, 2019, the Baker-Polito Administration filed a transportation bond bill seeking $18 billion in additional capital authorization to invest in building and modernizing a transportation system that meets the needs of residents, businesses and cities and towns statewide. The authorization would be used to fund existing programs as well as several new initiatives designed to lessen impacts from roadway congestion and ensure reliable travel throughout the Commonwealth.
On July 30, 2019, the House, followed by the Senate, assigned this bill to the Joint Committee on Transportation, which may hold a hearing on this bill in September. The transportation bond bill will be first heard by the Joint Committee on Transportation, followed by a hearing before the House Bonding Committee, before going to the House Ways and Means Committee and then to the full House for a vote. Following the House vote, the bill would then be reviewed and acted on in the Senate.
The bill had a hearing before the Joint Committee on Transportation on October 8 at 10 AM at the State House.
This bill was filed as H4002.
Summary- Section by Section
On February 12, 2020, Undersecretary Edward A. Palleschi announced leadership appointments and transitions at the Office of Consumer Affairs and Business Regulation (OCABR) and the Division of Professional Licensure (DPL). James A. Duggan has been named Deputy Undersecretary of OCABR. DPL Commissioner Diane Symonds will resign effective March 6, 2020, and Layla D’Emilia, Esq. will succeed her as the new Commissioner. Katie Fitzpatrick has been appointed as First Deputy Commissioner of Process and Performance Management for DPL.
Professional Engineers, Professional Land Surveyors, Registered Architects and other Design Professionals living in and licensed in Massachusetts are sought after to serve on certain public boards and commissions created under state law or by regulations. This is an opportunity to participate directly in government, by providing your professional expertise to help shape public policy for the benefit of residents. For more on serving and how to apply, see this link: https://www.engineers.org/get-involved/public-boards-commissions
Gubernatorial appointment requests:
Important: To be recognized as a MALSCE member you must login using your MALSCE assigned username and password.
Registration is processed through the MALSCE associated website, www.engineers.org. MALSCE is supported by the staff of The Engineering Center Education Trust.
Please note: Altering your name or contact information during registration may overwrite your record in our membership database and prevent you from receiving your member benefits.
If you have additional questions regarding registration, please contact us at 617/227-5551 or email@example.com.