From Hawai’i Business Magazine:

Anthony Lamorena, a government affairs associate with R Street, a conservative and libertarian think tank headquartered in Washington, D.C., says occupational licensing may be hindering the recovery in Hawai‘i by making it harder for laid off workers to shift occupations.

“These unnecessary barriers mean the hardest-hit workers, like those in the tourism industry, cannot easily turn to new vocations,” he wrote in an op-ed published in the Honolulu Star-Advertiser on Oct. 19.

Lamorena told me he’s not opposed to occupational licensing in general. “Occupational licenses may have made sense when the laws were written,” he says. However, over time, licensing rules may create more burden than benefit. Lamorena says that a periodic review of the licensing rules could help.

He also believes that recognition of other states’ licenses could help kama‘āina to return to Hawai‘i and help military spouses find work quicker. He says Hawai‘i should consider Arizona’s model of universal license recognition.