Texas

37 of 102 lower-income occupations licensed

21st most burdensome licensing laws

42nd most broadly and onerously licensed state

Texas licenses 37 of the 102 lower-income occupations studied here. Its laws are the 21st most burdensome and require, on average, $253 in fees, 341 days of education and experience, and around two exams. Licensing fewer lower-income occupations than most states, Texas ranks as the nation’s 42nd most broadly and onerously licensed state.

Despite licensing fewer occupations than most states, Texas does license some occupations that are rarely licensed elsewhere. For example, few other states license animal control officers (six), locksmiths (13) or weighers (24). Security alarm installers are not licensed by 14 states, yet Texas requires two years (730 days) of experience, $462 in fees and one exam before a person can open a security alarm installation business.

Texas imposes burdens on some occupations that seem excessive compared to those for other occupations that may present a greater risk to public safety. For example, it takes 10 times longer to become a cosmetologist or barber than it does to become an EMT (approximately 350 days or 1,500 hours of education versus approximately 35 days or 150 hours). Practitioners of these occupations should not be required to undergo so much more training than emergency first responders. Texas could expand lower-income employment opportunities by reducing or repealing its licensure burdens for cosmetologists, barbers and many other occupations, or—if government regulation is necessary—by replacing them with less restrictive regulatory alternatives such as inspections or voluntary certification.

Burden Rank Occupation States Licensed Fees Estimated Calendar Days Lost Education Experience Exams Min. Grade Min. Age
1 Preschool Teacher, Public School 50 $375 1460 4 years 2 0 18
2 HVAC Contractor (Commercial) 37 $209 1460 4 years 1 0 18
2 Sheet Metal Contractor, HVAC (Commercial) 37 $209 1460 4 years 1 0 18
4 Athletic Trainer 49 $544 1460 4 years 2 0 0
5 HVAC Contractor (Residential) 35 $195 1460 4 years 1 0 18
5 Sheet Metal Contractor, HVAC (Residential) 36 $195 1460 4 years 1 0 18
7 Security Alarm Installer 37 $462 730 2 years 1 0 18
8 Earth Driller, Water Well 51 $267 730 2 years 1 0 0
9 Midwife, Direct Entry 28 $1235 365 1 years 2 12 0
10 Cosmetologist 51 $176 350 1500 clock hours 2 12 17
11 Pest Control Applicator 51 $678 379 28 clock hours 1 years and 40 clock hours 2 0 0
11 Vegetation Pesticide Applicator 51 $678 379 28 clock hours 1 years and 40 clock hours 2 0 0
13 Barber 51 $55 350 1500 clock hours 2 0 16
14 Skin Care Specialist 50 $176 175 750 clock hours 2 12 17
15 Manicurist 50 $176 140 600 clock hours 2 12 17
16 Massage Therapist 44 $346 117 500 clock hours 2 0 18
17 Emergency Medical Technician 51 $144 35 150 clock hours 2 12 18
18 Shampooer 37 $156 70 300 clock hours 2 7 16
19 Auctioneer 30 $155 19 80 clock hours 1 12 18
20 School Bus Driver 51 $84 3 20 clock hours 6 0 18
21 Child Care Home, Family 44 $76 7 1 clock hours 30 clock hours 0 12 21
22 Truck Driver, Tractor-Trailer 51 $85 0 5 0 18
23 Bus Driver, City/Transit 51 $84 0 5 0 18
24 Truck Driver, Other 51 $85 0 4 0 18
25 Pharmacy Technician 44 $209 0 1 12 0
26 Fire Alarm Installer 39 $700 0 2 0 0
27 Mobile Home Installer 39 $591 2 12 clock hours 1 0 0
28 Security Guard, Unarmed 34 $62 1 6 clock hours 1 0 18
29 Locksmith 14 $63 0 0 0 18
30 Weigher 25 $500 0 0 0 0
31 Animal Control Officer 7 $75 2 12 clock hours 2 0 0
32 Milk Sampler 42 $0 1 1 days 1 0 0
33 Travel Guide 37 $132 0 0 0 0
34 Landscape Contractor (Commercial) 47 $75 0 0 0 0
34 Landscape Contractor (Residential) 48 $75 0 0 0 0
36 Fisher, Commercial 43 $53 0 0 0 0
37 Coach, Head (High School Sports) 48 $0 1 5 clock hours 0 0 0

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