Thursday, May 21, 2015

House Bill 1137 Tries to Exempt Geologists From Well Licensing

A little policy wonk stuff.

House Bill 1137 was introduced this legislative session would include licensed geologist as exempt from licensing associated with water well construction. The current exemptions include:

Any individual who personally constructs a well on land which is owned or leased by the individual or in which the individual has a beneficial interest as a contract purchaser and is used by the individual for farm or single-family residential use only


a person who is a licensed architect,
a licensed professional engineer,
or a licensed professional land surveyor.

Geologists are not exempt so can't do any water well work.

Kind of a strange situation since geologists are routinely charged with determining how and where wells should be constructed. The Washington State Groundwater Association raised some concerns in opposition to the bill. Understandable in an effort to protect their industry. They suggested sending this issue to the Well Construction Technical Advisory Group (WCTAG).     

The committee hearing can be heard HERE. The bill appears to be on pause and likely will not see any action this year.

I have no involvement in this issue, but will offer the view that if the law on well licensing is going to exempt anyone, geologists are probably the most qualified to be exempted. Would be a good subject for the WCTAG to take up; however, that group did sort of mess up on a rule a few years ago that required a legislative fix in that they defined test pits as wells during rule making. 

No comments: