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Bill to License Landscape Architects in D.C. Introduced
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Phil Mendelson, chairman of the Council of the District of Columbia, asserts that regulation of landscape architecture in D.C. is necessary because he believes "...there are landscape architects who feel that there are bad actors out there, and the way to deal with it is to have a licensing process."

There is landscape architecture licensing in all 50 states, but not in D.C.

On June 21, 2016, Phil Mendelson, chairman of the Council of the District of Columbia, introduced the "Regulation of Landscape Architecture and Professional Design Firms Act of 2016" (http://tinyurl.com/huw2bk3).

The bill requires landscape architects working in Washington, D.C., to be licensed in the District, and firms located in D.C. to be registered as professional design firms. The legislation was developed through a three-year collaboration between the ASLA Potomac Chapter, the D.C. Board of Architects and Interior Designers and ASLA. The Potomac Chapter and ASLA's advocacy efforts include reviewing and commenting on the draft language, conducting outreach to allied professional organizations, engaging a local lobbyist and leading multiple informational meetings with D.C. councilmembers
and their staffs.

Sec. 2. Chapter 28 of Title 47 of the District of Columbia Official Code is
amended as follows:

"There is established a Board of Architecture, Interior Design and Landscape Architecture to consist of 9 members of whom 4 shall be architects licensed in the District, 2 shall be interior designers licensed in the District, 2 shall be professional landscape architects licensed in the District, and one shall be a consumer member. The Board shall regulate the practice of architecture, interior design, and
landscape architecture.

"All professional design services solicited or provided by a professional design firm in the District shall be under the responsibility charge of a supervising architect, interior designer, or professional landscape architect who is licensed in the District.

"No person shall sign and stamp any professional design document on behalf of the firm except an architect, interior designer, or professional landscape architect
licensed in the District."

ASLA said the D.C. legislation would complete the last piece of the "licensure puzzle." After introduction, the bill was referred to the Council of the District of Columbia's committee on business, consumer and regulatory affairs. The next step is a hearing, likely this fall, at which ASLA and the ASLA Potomac Chapter and ASLA National, along with the mayor, will testify. Passage of the bill and the mayor's signature must be completed prior to December 22 for the bill to become law in 2016.









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September 16, 2019, 12:13 am PDT

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