Missouri House Bill 1719, the Professional Employer Organization Act, was signed into law June 1 just prior to Governor Eric Greitens’ resignation.

The bill’s signing was not unexpected as it was wrapped into an omnibus package that required passage prior to the Legislature ending its session.

As previously reported in Inroads, ASAE believes this bill contains language that is detrimental to both credentialing programs that are incorporated into state licensure laws (such as medical fields, CPAs, etc.) and voluntary certifications that are not required to practice an occupation in any state but demonstrate an individual’s professional knowledge and competence in a field (such as ASAE’s CAE credential).

The bill text defines certification as a “program in which the government grants nontransferable recognition to an individual.” By redefining “certification” as an exclusively government function, the bill as written pushes Missouri to start supplanting private certification programs.

ASAE has had productive discussions with staff from Missouri Senator Jeanie Riddle’s office and will continue to pursue a legislative fix. Riddle chairs the Professional Registration Committee in the Missouri Senate. Additionally, ASAE will be working with a coalition of like-minded organizations concerned about state certification/licensing legislation around the country and will keep the association community informed when there are developments that warrant attention.