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DeAngelo & Quijano Bill to Establish Licensure Procedures For Pool and Spa Service Contractors B

Requiring licensure for pool and spa contractors, legislation sponsored by Assemblyman Wayne DeAngelo and Assemblywoman Annette Quijano to put in place safety procedures and guidelines for backyard pool and spa service was recently signed into law. "Currently, it is too easy for an individual to claim they are certified and knowledgeable in pool and spa contracting without actually having completed licensure or training programs," said DeAngelo (D-Mercer, Middlesex). "Just as there are guidelines in place for contractors handling plumbing and electrical projects inside a home, there needs to be standards for contractors installing and maintaining the plumbing and electrical systems operating our backyard pools and spas." The new law (formerly bill A-3772) would establish licensing standards for pool and spa service contractors, builders, and installers. To be eligible for licensure as a pool and spa service contractor, an applicant must be at least 18 years old and be of good moral character. The applicant must meet qualifications -- established by the state oversight committee established by the legislation -- regarding experience, continuing education, financial responsibility and integrity. Applicants also would need to establish qualifications to perform and supervise various phases of pool and spa service contracting as evidenced by successfully completing a specific certification. The law also creates a seven-member Pool and Spa Service Contractors and Pool and Spa Builders and Installers Advisory Committee in the Department of Law and Public Safety, under the Board of Examiners of Electrical Contractors. Appointees to the Advisory Committee would be New Jersey residents who have experience in plumbing, and electrical or pool maintenance to ensure expertise in relevant industries. "While some may think that a pool and spa's installation and maintenance don't warrant licensure, it's really quite the opposite," said Assemblywoman Annette Quijano (D-Union). "Although their function and purpose are of a relaxed nature, if proper protocols are not in place to ensure their safety, the end result could be tragic." The new law also stipulates that electricians, plumbers, HVAC-R contractors, and homeowners conducting pool and spa building or repair on their own residential property will not be required to obtain a license to renovate or repair non-potable water components of a pool, hot tub, spa or free standing pool heaters.

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