Since the start of Biden’s administration, there have been several reforms in the Department of Labor, most of which are positive.
On the top of this reform list is the increment in the hourly wage of construction workers from a paltry sum of $10.5 to $15 per hour.
That said, consumers have complained and lamented about the poor services of some new contractors. For instance, you hired a contractor to build your house, but some parts of the building collapsed after a few months. Who would bear the loss? Your guess is as good as mine, the consumer.
Due to the constant cries and lamentations of New Jerseyeans, assemblyman Paul Moriarty, D-Gloucoster, had to sponsor a bill regulating the practices of new contractors.
What Does the Bill Entail?
- Establishment of a new board:
The bill made a provision for the establishment of New Jersey State Board of Home Improvement and Home Elevation.
The board will consist of nine members: a governor-appointee, two public members, a home elevation contractor, and five experienced home improvement contractors.
The board would be responsible for regulating new contractors’ practices and developing education curriculum for the contractors. They will also determine the requirement for license issuance and renewal.
- Apprenticeship program:
The bill stipulates that contractor-to-be would have to undergo training for a certain period either from approved centers or from the direct tutelage of an approved supervisor for 24 months.
- Sitting for an exam
Upon completing the apprenticeship program, the prospective contractor must sit for an exam to test their knowledge about the New Jersey laws and the field they’ve chosen to practice.
There is a general saying which says, ‘where there is no law, there is no sin.’ As expected, the bill came with penalties. For instance, if a contractor fails to obtain a permit for a construction project, the individual risks a $10,000 fine on the first occasion, which might increase to $20,000 if the offense is repeated for the second time.
Also, contractors might be charged a sum of $10,000-$25,000 if such an individual gives false information during the application for project permit.
- Protection of consumer
The bill intends to protect the consumers who are often on the receiving end. Therefore, licensed contractors must demonstrate some level of financial security or stability. Either by issuing a letter of credit or posting a $100,000 bond.
Regulating and ensuring some level of sanity is a way to cleanse the construction industry of any dirt. It is a season of change; we must adapt to it.