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APA Joins Coalition to Protect Professional Certifications

BY: APA Staff | 09/18/18

In July, APA joined the Professional Certification Coalition (PCC), led by the American Society of Association Executives (ASAE) and the Institute for Credentialing Excellence (ICE). PCC’s mission is to inform state legislators about the value of voluntary professional certification and to block bills that would restrict, or even ban, certification.

Thus far in 2018, 12 states have introduced bills concerning certification. More bills are expected in 2019. Louisiana and Missouri have laws in place. Most of the legislation is intended to eliminate barriers to employment by cutting back on occupational licensing. However, nongovernmental professional certification programs, including APA’s Certified Payroll Professional (CPP) and Fundamental Payroll Certification (FPC), are threatened by the proposed legislation.

The push for state legislation often comes from groups interested in reducing workforce barriers they believe interfere with competition and increase consumer prices. One group, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), drafted model legislation for states to consider. PCC believes that the model legislation opens the door to attacks on private certification programs through broad definitions and false assumptions about the value of these programs.

ICE prepared a survey, the Business of Certification Benchmarks, to collect data from organizations about their certification programs. As a nonprofit organization operating its certification program in all 50 states, APA’s data showed a high level of interest by employers in certifying payroll employees and maintaining that certification.

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