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Pending Legislation to License Home Improvements Contractors

Assembly Bill 571: This bill licenses general contractors.

“General contractor” means an individual or business that shall be or can be classified in trade 008 or 009 by the Division of Property Management and Construction in the New Jersey Department of the Treasury to perform services including, but not limited to, general construction; alterations and additions; partitions and ceilings; doors and hardware; windows; siding and gutters; carpeting; carpeting; flooring and tile; millwork; insulation; acoustical work; concrete, foundation footings and masonry; fencing; curtain walls; site work; sewage and water treatment plants; landscape construction; road construction and paving; pumping stations; caulking and waterproofing; general painting; sandblasting; prefabrication buildings; prefabrication music and sound clean rooms; detention equipment systems; food service equipment; school furnishings; lab furniture and equipment; and seating and bleachers.

The bill creates a Board of General Contractors in the Division of Consumer Affairs. Individuals must pass an exam which must be administered at least four times a year. To be eligible to sit for the exam applicants must be at least 18, of good moral character, and obtain a bachelor’s degree in project management with at least 60 credits in construction courses. Licenses are for two years and CEUs will be required as determined by the Board.

Any individual with a minimum 10 years’ experience in general contracting prior to the act’s effective date who has not declared bankruptcy nor changed the name of a company are grandfathered. Also grandfathered are individuals licensed, certified, or registered in a closely allied professions including architects, engineers, home improvement or home registration contractors.

The bill is sponsored by Assemblyman Robert Karabinchak (D-Edison), a GC who builds wastewater treatment plants.

Assembly Bill 2138: The bill repeals the existing Home Improvement Contractors Registration Act and Home Elevation Contractors Registration Act and replaces it with the Board of Home Improvement and Home Elevation Contractors.

To be eligible to sit for either exam an individual must be at least 18 years old, graduated high school, and either completed a US DoL Apprenticeship or worked for two years under the direct supervision of a licensee.

HIC contractors must have a minimum $500,000 general liability insurance policy per occurrence. Home elevation contractors must have a minimum $500,000 general liability insurance policy per occurrence and maintain cargo or other insurance that specifically covers home elevation activities, in a minimum amount of $1,000,000 per occurrence.

Any individual who has been registered as a home improvement contractor for at least 10 years or to an individual who has at least 10 years of experience in providing home elevation services who has been registered as a home improvement contractor in New Jersey for at least 10 years or registered as a home elevation contractor in New Jersey for at least five years will be grandfathered.

The bill is sponsored by Assemblyman Paul Moriarty (D-Gloucester) who is the Chair of the Assembly Consumer Affairs Committee where the bill has been referenced.

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