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Cox first order occupational licensing
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For Gov. Cox, first order of business involved occupational licenses

New Utah Gov. Spencer Cox signs his first executive order in Fillmore, Utah. Photo credit: Gov. Spencer Cox

SALT LAKE CITY — Along with ceremonial activities marking their inauguration on Monday, Gov. Spencer Cox and Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson began their business of governing the state of Utah by signing Executive Order 2021-01 which involves Occupational Licenses issued by Utah agencies.

It requires those agencies to review all such licenses. The concern is that some existing licenses may be unnecessary, outdated, or incomplete.

As an example, Gov. Cox used a 2011 lawsuit against the state of Utah by a woman who questioned why the state had a cosmetology license requirement for braided hair. She contested that requirement in federal court and won.

“Government regulation is often necessary to protect people,” Cox said, “but sometimes requirements end up hurting people who are trying to enter an industry or profession.”

“We now have an opportunity to take a fresh look at our licensing requirements to make sure that we don’t have more rules than are necessary and that the rules we have continue to make sense.”

 According to reporting from the Deseret News, Utah’s restrictions on occupational licenses are the 24th most burdensome in the nation.

Gov. Cox isn’t alone in his desire to potentially ease some state licensing requirements.  According to the Deseret News, Utah state Rep. Candice Pierucci and state Sen. Curt Bramble are working on legislation that would streamline several cosmetology licenses into one.

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