Mixed reaction to bill that will allow Arizona to recognize out-of-state occupational licenses

PHOENIX (FOX 10) -- The State of Arizona is set to make history this week. If Governor Doug Ducey signs the so-called occupational licensing bill into law, Arizona will become the first state in the country to recognize out-of-state licenses in most occupations.

If the new bill becomes law, that will mean if a person has an occupational license from another state, they can qualify for the same license in Arizona. All that person will have to do is pay a licensing fee. It would impact thousands of occupations, from hairdressers to funeral directors, but not everyone here who is already licensed is happy.

"It is the worse idea I've ever heard," said Cindy Rogers. Rogers, who has been a cosmetologist for 35 years, says the universal licensing law degrades her license and her hard work.

"There's a reason they make us wrap 150 curls," said Rogers. "There's a reason we do 100 manicures before we get a license. There's a reason we test."

Rogers feels the new law would open the door for serious problems for customers if they end up with someone who has the license from another state, but not the proper training.

"Flatirons are 400°F," said Rogers. "They can burn your hair off in a minute. The customer has no recourse."

Customer Cara Thomas says she has mixed feelings about universal licensing.

"If another state doesn't require that individual to go through as much training, then they should have to possibly come here and re-certify or prove they have the skills our state requires," said Thomas.

Josh Forrester, a funeral director who relocated from Indiana to Arizona, said the red tape and re-licensing was a lot.

"The state laws for funeral directing are different in Indiana than in Arizona, so I had to take that information to take my state test," said Forrester. "I did learn what I needed to support the bill for the ease of transition, but if you're coming from another state with a license, I think you should be required to take a course to learn the rules and regulations of your industry in Arizona."

Governor Ducey, a big champion of this bill, says it will encourage more workers to move to Arizona, because they know their license will be valid here immediately, and they can start work immediately. The Governor is expected to sign the bill into law by the end of the week.