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New York

License to Work: A National Study of Burdens from Occupational Licensing

License to Work: A National Study of Burdens from Occupational Licensing

Highlights

33 out of 102 moderate-income occupations licensed
19th most burdensome licensing laws
40th most extensively and onerously licensed state

(Last updated April 24, 2012)

Summary

New York licenses fewer lower-income occupations than most states, only 33, but for those it does license, it imposes substantial barriers. The state has the 19th most burdensome licensing laws, requiring, on average, $145 in fees, 283 days lost to training and two exams. If New York wants to improve employment prospects for low- to moderate income workers, it could reduce or eliminate these barriers to entry.

For a number of occupations, New York has above-average requirements. For example, aspiring crane operators lose three years to experience, but 12 of the 18 states that license the occupation do not require even one day. A barber is expected to have nearly two-and-a-half years of experience and education. The average training across the states in this occupation is just over a year -- 416 days.

Aspiring mobile home installers lose two years in New York compared to the national average of 245 days. Child care workers must have a year of training, outpacing every other state except for New Jersey. At most the other 31 states that license child care workers require two weeks.

In addition to examining barriers that are excessive compared to other states, New York policymakers should look at those that are higher than occupations with a more direct link to public safety. While one can become a licensed emergency medical technician with about 35 days of training, it takes four times that to become a makeup artist or skin care specialist. It takes even longer to earn a license as a massage therapist, cosmetologist, mobile home installer or barber.

Licensing Requirements

Burden RankOccupationNumber of States that LicenseFeesEducation/Experience (Days)ExamsMinimum GradeMinimum Age
1 Preschool Teacher 49 100 1,825 3 0 0
2 Athletic Trainer 46 450 1,460 1 0 21
3 Crane Operator 18 150 1,095 3 0 21
4 Barber 50 60 884 3 0 17
5 Midwife 29 305 730 1 12 21
6 Veterinary Technologist 37 358 730 1 0 0
7 Mobile Home Installer 39 200 732 1 0 0
8 Optician 22 100 560 3 12 18
9 Massage Therapist 39 115 233 1 12 18
10 Child Care Worker 33 0 366 0 0 18
11 Cosmetologist 51 70 233 2 0 17
12 Makeup Artist 36 55 140 2 0 17
12 Skin Care Specialist 50 55 140 2 0 17
14 Emergency Medical Technician 51 35 35 2 12 18
15 Security Alarm Installer 34 275 60 1 0 18
16 School Bus Driver 51 50 1 6 0 21
17 Pest Control Applicator 51 350 5 2 0 17
17 Vegetation Pesticide Handler 51 350 5 2 0 17
19 Bus Driver (City/Transit) 51 50 0 5 0 18
20 Fire Alarm Installer 34 275 14 1 0 18
21 Teacher Assistant 29 35 0 1 12 0
22 Truck Driver 51 40 0 4 0 18
23 Manicurist 50 35 58 2 0 0
24 Earth Driller 47 275 0 2 0 0
25 Travel Guide 21 100 0 1 0 18
26 Security Guard 37 141 1 0 0 18
27 Backflow Prevention Assembly Tester 18 180 9 1 0 0
28 Fisher 41 250 0 0 0 0
29 Farm Labor Contractor 9 200 0 0 0 0
30 Animal Control Officer 17 50 0 1 0 0
31 Coach (School Sports) 24 0 17 0 0 0
32 Animal Breeder 26 62 0 0 0 0
33 Weigher 24 15 0 0 0 0

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