Senate committee approves Rep. McClintock’s bill to improve testing procedure for architectural licensing

The Senate Labor and Commerce Committee voted in favor of legislation from Rep. Stephanie McClintock on Tuesday that would help people working toward a career in architecture. House Bill 1880 would eliminate the five-year rolling timeline for architecture applicants to successfully pass each section of their examination for registration.

“Many licensing rules and regulations in Washington are cumbersome or overbearing, including the current policy for passing the architectural registration exam,” said McClintock, R-Vancouver. “This legislation would remove an unnecessary barrier for people pursuing an architectural career in Washington and help get more people into the workforce. State government should look for ways to help people progress professionally, instead of maintaining employment barriers that hold them back.”

To qualify for registration as an architect in Washington, an applicant must pass the required examination. The Washington State Board of Architects is responsible for determining the examination’s scope, content, and grading process, and the exam must be held at least annually.

Under current law, applicants who fail to pass any section of the examination are permitted to retake the failed parts. However, they only have five years from the date of the first passed examination section to pass all remaining sections. If they do not complete the entire examination within the five years, they must retake any section passed more than five years earlier.

If an applicant fails to pass all remaining sections within the initial five-year period, he or she is given a new five-year period from the date of the second oldest passed section. Currently, all sections must be passed within a single five-year period for the applicant to pass the examination successfully.

The bill would change the current standard by eliminating the five-year rolling period, allowing applicants to retake and pass any failed sections of the examination as determined by the Board.

“I’m happy to see this legislation take the next step, and I’m hopeful it eventually reaches the governor’s desk,” said McClintock. “This outdated policy is hurting would-be architects from joining the workforce, many of whom are minorities or serving in the military. My bill would right some of these wrongs.”

House Bill 1880 is now in the Senate Rules Committee, where it awaits scheduling for further deliberations and a vote by the entire chamber.


Washington State House Republican Communications