Florida Licensing and the Old End-Around Play

Brilliant, simply brilliant! There is little doubt that we are witnessing history in the making and that this will go down as one of the best examples of how to employ the end-around strategy ever concocted. Humbled, my hat is off to Matt Dempsey & the Florida Licensing Illuminati. Bravo, Bellissimo, Prego! I am truly not worthy.

It had to be a monumental task to for the Florida Licensing Illuminati to convince its hard core members to open up the “collation” to all associations (yes, even NACHI was allowed a seat at the table) under the false premise that if we could come together and get a real “home inspector” licensing bill passed the end would surely justify the means. To everyone’s astonishment the “collation” bit the bullet and made it happen.

What occurred next was quite a success, backs were slapped, hatchets were buried and hands were shook all in an attempt to find that hallowed “common ground” were work could miraculously progress on the penultimate home inspector licensing bill. Yes, out of the ashes of a dying HB315 like a phoenix, a glorious new “collation” blessed home inspector bill emerged… the trap was set and everyone was sucked in by the pomp & spectacle.

With peace in the valley achieved and the swamp nearly drained the focus could now be directed at building the home inspector’s licensing version of Babble’s Tower… Coalition members were busily preoccupied with meetings, emails, postings, discussion and concessions, a flurry of resources were expended all in an effort to finally “get it right” and once and for all prove to everyone the virtues of licensing, Amen-amen-amen.

But… who would have ever guessed that lurking in the background was the often hated, sometime despised and never trusted puppet-master of puppet-masters, no other then FABI’s very own Matt Dempsey, who in concert with the other hard core Florida Licensing Illuminati would now introduce the only “real” bill they had ever intended to get passed into law from the very start?

It will be interesting to see who will ultimately prevail here but were I a gambling man my hard-earned money would be down on Dempsey & Company, chances are real good they are so far out in front of everyone else that the “collation” looks like ants in the rear-view mirror as they pull away from the pack. Furthermore, anyone who wants to be on the side of the winning team, really need to reconsider FABI membership for after all it was FABI who back in 2004 engineered this adroitly skilled gambit that finally looks likely to pay off.

I will not be renewing my FABI memership. I feel that the only fair bill would be on that allows all current home inspectors to be grandfathered in. There are many professional home inspectors that provide a valuable services, who may be lacking the 250 inspections. What would be the benifit of being a FABI canidate. They are definately not to concerned with their canidate members. They will loose many members, you can count on that. Hopefully those that lack the 250 inspections that this bill wont shut them down. Hopefully they can meet on middle ground and create a bill that will not affect people who have not been in business long. I guess time will tell. Merry Christmas to all

We’re starting to see this game in many arenas this year. The realtors or builders contact the HI groups and tell them if you don’t - we will.

Then a few knights in shining armor step up and offer to put together a coallition of ALL groups, because guys we’re all in this together …

BUT when we go to the individual group meetings its still about how WE are going to wrest control, stack the HI board, yaddi, yaddi …

All Florida inspectors need to go and get smart about the Florida Sunrise Act (Section 11.62, F.S.) Not the Sunshine Act.
That one piece of legislation is your protection against such bills as these that threaten your livelihood. It establishes criteria that MUST be met before initiating regulation of any industry group in the State of Florida. Among the criteria is a requirement to show that, left unregulated, current industry activities will endanger or substantially harm the public safety or welfare. Often the supporters of such bills will attempt to show that problems do exist but more often than not fall far short of the threshold of substantial harm as required by the Sunrise Act.

Florida inspectors can once again stand around wringing their hands or with one thumb in their bum and the other in their mouths, swapping hands every few seconds and watch your business go down the hopper or you can get smart about what can and can not be done. First and foremost, get yourselves educated on the LAW. Back it up with facts and get involved. You are being sold a bill of goods. There has been no public demand for licensing except by Home inspectors. Ive talked with Realtors and they have never heard of any attempts by FAR to get a licensing bill. It does not matter. If it can not pass the muster of the Sunrise Act they can pump all the money they want to. You have to remind your reps every day if necessary that they took an oath of office and if they decide to put you out of business, than you intend to put them out of office, and if it means a lawsuit than there are enough of us to do it. Go find the law on MyFlorida.com and get up to speed. Don’t wait for someone else to do all the heavy lifting.

Doug thanks for the info. I plan on being more proactive and will study the Sunrise Act. I know many inspectors have worked very hard to grow their businesses and have spent lot’s of money on marketing, education ECT. but may not quite have the 250 inspections. I think the Dempsy Bill is very self serving and an attemp to weed out the competition or future competition. Let the market do the weeding out, just my thoughts.

Thanks Doug.


In other words, this can be your tool to fend off both of the bills now being pushed, correct?

**The 2006 Florida Statutes


Title III
11.62 Legislative review of proposed regulation of unregulated functions.
(1) This section may be cited as the “Sunrise Act.”
(2) It is the intent of the Legislature:
(a) That no profession or occupation be subject to regulation by the state unless the regulation is necessary to protect the public health, safety, or welfare from significant and discernible harm or damage and that the police power of the state be exercised only to the extent necessary for that purpose; and
(b) That no profession or occupation be regulated by the state in a manner that unnecessarily restricts entry into the practice of the profession or occupation or adversely affects the availability of the professional or occupational services to the public.
(3) In determining whether to regulate a profession or occupation, the Legislature shall consider the following factors:
(a) Whether the unregulated practice of the profession or occupation will substantially harm or endanger the public health, safety, or welfare, and whether the potential for harm is recognizable and not remote;
(b) Whether the practice of the profession or occupation requires specialized skill or training, and whether that skill or training is readily measurable or quantifiable so that examination or training requirements would reasonably assure initial and continuing professional or occupational ability;
© Whether the regulation will have an unreasonable effect on job creation or job retention in the state or will place unreasonable restrictions on the ability of individuals who seek to practice or who are practicing a given profession or occupation to find employment;
(d) Whether the public is or can be effectively protected by other means; and
(e) Whether the overall cost-effectiveness and economic impact of the proposed regulation, including the indirect costs to consumers, will be favorable.
(4) The proponents of legislation that provides for the regulation of a profession or occupation not already expressly subject to state regulation shall provide, upon request, the following information in writing to the state agency that is proposed to have jurisdiction over the regulation and to the legislative committees to which the legislation is referred:
(a) The number of individuals or businesses that would be subject to the regulation;
(b) The name of each association that represents members of the profession or occupation, together with a copy of its codes of ethics or conduct;
© Documentation of the nature and extent of the harm to the public caused by the unregulated practice of the profession or occupation, including a description of any complaints that have been lodged against persons who have practiced the profession or occupation in this state during the preceding 3 years;
(d) A list of states that regulate the profession or occupation, and the dates of enactment of each law providing for such regulation and a copy of each law;
(e) A list and description of state and federal laws that have been enacted to protect the public with respect to the profession or occupation and a statement of the reasons why these laws have not proven adequate to protect the public;
(f) A description of the voluntary efforts made by members of the profession or occupation to protect the public and a statement of the reasons why these efforts are not adequate to protect the public;
(g) A copy of any federal legislation mandating regulation;
(h) An explanation of the reasons why other types of less restrictive regulation would not effectively protect the public;
(i) The cost, availability, and appropriateness of training and examination requirements;
(j) The cost of regulation, including the indirect cost to consumers, and the method proposed to finance the regulation;
(k) The cost imposed on applicants or practitioners or on employers of applicants or practitioners as a result of the regulation;
(l) The details of any previous efforts in this state to implement regulation of the profession or occupation; and
(m) Any other information the agency or the committee considers relevant to the analysis of the proposed legislation.
(5) The agency shall provide the Legislature with information concerning the effect of proposed legislation that provides for new regulation of a profession or occupation regarding:
(a) The departmental resources necessary to implement and enforce the proposed regulation;
(b) The technical sufficiency of the proposal for regulation, including its consistency with the regulation of other professions and occupations under existing law; and
© If applicable, any alternatives to the proposed regulation which may result in a less restrictive or more cost-effective regulatory scheme.
(6) When making a recommendation concerning proposed legislation providing for new regulation of a profession or occupation, a legislative committee shall determine:
(a) Whether the regulation is justified based on the criteria specified in subsection (3), the information submitted pursuant to request under subsection (4), and the information provided under subsection (5);
(b) The least restrictive and most cost-effective regulatory scheme that will adequately protect the public; and
© The technical sufficiency of the proposed legislation, including its consistency with the regulation of other professions and occupations under existing law. History.–s. 6, ch. 91-429; s. 1, ch. 94-218; s. 133, ch. 99-251.

And I love to dig up dirt on the people sponsoring it. Trust me, I will search deep into someones past.

So far I know he is Lobbyist who was hired by FABI in 2005.
And he attends Pest Control Advisory meetings

The Sunrise Act is like Kryptonite to unnecessary legislation. Your representatives need to know that YOU know what it says and are willing to fight if necessary to ensure that no unnecessary bills will be placed into law. The manner in which we portray ourselves is extremely important. We can all argue about the merits, the pros and cons of licensing but if ANY bill does not meet ALL of the above criteria it should not become law in the State of Florida. It may look good and feel good but if it is not necessary, or puts anyone one of you out of business, it will not stand up in a court of law. Stop trying to fight this in the arena of licensing makes the HI more credible. That is total hogwash. NO one can legislate credibility. You either are credible or you are not. Keep your eye on the ball and remember this phrase, “The Sunrise Act”. Almost every single tenant of these and previous bill has violated the elements of the Sunrise Act. Read it, learn it and refer to it in every single correspondence you send. Like I said. get smart, get informed and get mad. I like what Dan Bowers said. State after State, the Home inspectors have allowed this to happen to them and in many cases have acquiesced to adopt a lesser bill in face of a strict bill or a “straw man” piece of legislation. That is the old bait and switch game. I did a search tonight trying to find how many complaints there have been against Home Inspectors in Florida. I could not find zip. I could find plenty about contractors, realtors, car salesmen, even barbers but not one mention of Home Inspectors. Do your own searches.

BTW, thanks Jay for posting the Sunrise Act for all to read.


With Nachi being the largest association can we do something about this? I don’t so much appose some sort of regulation, however, I just want everyone to have an equal opportunity to achieve their goals and pursue their dreams. Most inspection companies are 1-2 man operations, in my area anyway. The thought of anyone having to close shop on a business they have worked so hard for and find someone in their area willing to bring them on so they can obtain the 250 inspections just does not seem fair and may be a very hard task for many people.
I was so excited when the other bill said that everyone in business, stays in business came out, what a relief. Now the possibility of that may be compromised. It’s not over yet, hopefully this will work out for everybody’s benefit.
My interpretation of the Demsey bill is that inspectors that do not meet the requirements, ie; 250 inspections, are grandfathered or given until 2009 to to meet the requirements. Someone please correct me if my interpretaion is wrong.

I will fight it tooth and nail. Who else is on board?

A bill, any bill has to meet ALL the requirements of the Sunrise ACT. Almost every HI bill I have ever seen stands to eliminate someone or a group of people from doing business. You can not look at this as “does it just protect me for now or the people already doing business”. It has to protect that person who, 10 years from now is thinking of going into the business. Equally important, anyone proposing new legislation or regulation HAS TO answer all those questions listed in the Sunrise Act. Have they done that? NO!!! These kinds of bills were exactly why the Sunrise Act came about. It came about because special interest groups of one kind or another tried to use the legislature to create laws that would stifle their competition or create an environment where they stood to make more money at the exclusion of someone else. Like I said, study the ACT , learn all of its elements. The elements are not mutually exclusive of one another. This Act is dynamite if you learn how to use it. It is a powerful weapon against special interests groups. They hope their opponents don’t know about it. I bet there are Representatives that do not know about it, especially the new ones. YOU have to educate them on it. We have posted on the FAPHI website some sample letters we used during one of the last two or three fights. You have to point out the flaws, point by point and the foundation of our arguement is the Sunrise Act. You can not cherry pick elements of it as that waters down the effect of the Law.

Im with you Gary. What can we do to fight effectivly fight it?

Thanks Doug for the info.

Write as many law makers as we can. We need to write a standard letter we can send to all of them. It is going to take all of us though.

Thanks again Doug for your informative input

I am on board Gary, lets do it

I think Doug would be a good one to write it if he is up to it.