Good morning everyone. I found this forum yesterday and think it's the best on the net for electrical contractors. So first off, thanks. I have a couple of questions and hope that this is the right place.
I've been working with my dad as an electrician going on 2 years now. He's been a licensed electrical contractor for 20 years and is teaching my brother and I the business. Until just recently I hadn't even heard about the certification requirements imposed by the State. Since this directly affects the path we head my questions are:
1. Does it seem likely that they will extend the certification deadline from the 1/1/06 date? From my research I understand that there are approximately 100,000 electrical workers in the state. According to the states website only 27,000 have been certified since this bill passed in 2001 I believe. Seems like a lot of certification outstanding to enforce something where the majority fall outside.
2. If they do enforce the certification on 1/1/06 what options do my brother and I have? I understand that we won't be able to work with my dad until we're certified but wonder where we would get the experience if we can't work. Seems like a Catch-22.
Thanks for your input on this issue as it is a little concerning to us.
The state currently does not verify your hours. You can take that to mean whatever you want.
The exam is pretty basic. A decent understanding of how to look up things in the code book with a bit of study and most people shouldn't have a problem passing it IMO. As I stated in another post, get a copy of the union exam, it is very similar.
For mom and pop shops, the apprenticeship requirement could be a problem. The only approved programs that I know of are a union program or ABC. But, I believe your company has to be a member to join the ABC program.
I personally think this is never going to go into effect. The law is going on 8 years and they still can't get there act together.
Its pretty sad actually, there could be some nice benefits if this program got going correctly. But right now it seems like its just a black hole sucking money and time of the hard working electricians in this state.
Re: California Certification Deadline#52042 05/18/0508:55 PM05/18/0508:55 PM
From what I can gather, the way people see this actually going to effect first is with state projects and maybe a few select cities (San Diego/San Fran seem to be willing to enforce, LA I have heard doesn't want to deal with it).
This would mean, for 99% of the work in the state, it will continue to not be enforced by the Jan 1, 200x deadline.
Re: California Certification Deadline#52043 05/18/0508:58 PM05/18/0508:58 PM
Now don't take anything below this personally! Just figuratively speaking / venting to the same list of questions. (As if you didn't ask them, because you do not deserve the hostility that follows. This is for the imaginary person out there.)
If your father or anyone else can testify for you, and your brothers hours.... Go ahead and take the test! Sorting material in your garage could count for 300 hours. It's not like they check anyway! (really!)
One correction in the numbers you mentioned above.... There are only 14,000 Certified in the state, out of the 27,000 authorized exams, and some of those are multiple certifications. i.e. General and FLS, etc. So that number may be lower. By the time its enforced, you might be an old man anyway. And if they enforce it 6 months from now you won't be alone. There will be many other people scrambing to get into "Approved Apprenticeship Programs" that do not exist in any form to handle the change. And what will the other 70,000+ plus elctricians out there who haven't applied do? For that matter, what will happen to the billions of dollars in construction projects happening now state-wide? Do you think those 14,000 guys are going to do the work of seven men? (Seeing that they can only supervise one apprentice each, I guess there will be 28,000 electrical workers state-wide.) Everything in the state will wait? Of course it will be post-poned.
Please excuse my crass additude about the subject, but its a sore subject with myself and a few others around here, who will chime in soon.
Mark Heller "Well - I oughta....." -Jackie Gleason
Re: California Certification Deadline#52044 05/18/0509:07 PM05/18/0509:07 PM
Insurance companys could only enforce if people were operating above board. But if someone is breaking the law using noncertified electricians, do you think they would have a problem not reporting those electricians to their insurance company (paying them under the table?). This enforcement would only be enforcement for those obeying the law, which really seems silly to me.
[This message has been edited by dmattox (edited 05-18-2005).]
Re: California Certification Deadline#52046 05/18/0509:35 PM05/18/0509:35 PM
Thanks for all of the replys. I agree with everything said. In theory this certification program makes a lot of sense but the execution of it leaves a lot to be desired. It doesn't seem like they could enforce a regulation that 80% of the industry fall out of. The Construction Industry is way too big of California's overall economy to bind it thru poor planning and execution. I believe they will have to extend until the supply of Certified Electricians can satisfy the demand.
There is no doubt in my mind that I could pass this test so I'm going to apply and take a shot. Does anyone have any experience at how long the waiting time is to take it? I've heard that they are backed up 5 months.
Thanks again for the input, I just needed to hear other opinions/insight on this matter.