Current Status Introducing Body:
HouseBill Number: 3723Primary Sponsor: BurrissCommittee Number: 12Type of Legislation: GBSubject: Interior DesignersResiding Body: SenateCurrent Committee: Labor, Commerce & IndustryCompanion Bill Number: 770Computer Document Number: BBM/9247.JMIntroduced Date: Mar 26, 1991Date of Last Amendment: May 22, 1991Last History Body: SenateLast History Date: Jun 05, 1991Last History Type: Referred to CommitteeScope of Legislation: StatewideAll Sponsors: Burriss CorningType of Legislation: General Bill
Bill Body Date Action Description CMN ---- ------ ------------ ------------------------------ --- 3723 Senate Jun 05, 1991 Referred to Committee 12 3723 Senate Jun 05, 1991 Recalled from Committee 08 3723 Senate May 27, 1991 Introduced, read first time, 08 referred to Committee 3723 House May 23, 1991 Read third time, sent to Senate 3723 House May 22, 1991 Amended, read second time 3723 House May 15, 1991 Committee Report: Favorable 26 with amendment 3723 House Mar 26, 1991 Introduced, read first time, 26 referred to CommitteeView additional legislative information at the LPITS web site.
May 22, 1991
S. Printed 5/22/91--H.
Read the first time March 26, 1991.
TO AMEND TITLE 40, CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, RELATING TO PROFESSIONS AND OCCUPATIONS, BY ADDING CHAPTER 81 SO AS TO ENACT THE "SOUTH CAROLINA INTERIOR DESIGNERS ACT", INCLUDING PROVISIONS FOR, AMONG OTHER THINGS, REGULATIONS, PENALTIES, AND FEES.
Amend Title To Conform
Be it enacted by the General Assembly of the State of South Carolina:
SECTION 1. The General Assembly finds that it is in the best interest of the State to license and regulate interior designers to protect the public health, safety, and welfare of the people of this State; to prohibit the use of the title "interior designer" by nonlicensed persons; to establish a board to promulgate regulations and criteria for licensing to protect the public; and to prescribe penalties for violations.
SECTION 2. Title 40 of the 1976 Code is amended by adding:
Section 40-81-10. This chapter may be cited as the `South Carolina Interior Designers Act'.
Section 40-81-20. As used in this chapter:
(1) `Board' means the Interior Design Board.
(2) `Interior designer' means a person licensed under this chapter. An interior designer is one who is qualified by education, experience, and examination to affect the function and quality of interior spaces by performing the following functions:
(a) analyzing clients' needs, goals, and life and safety requirements;
(b) integrating findings with knowledge of interior design;
(c) formulating preliminary design concepts that are appropriate, functional, and aesthetic;
(d) developing and presenting final design recommendations through appropriate presentation media;
(e) space planning and preparing documents for the construction of nonstructural systems, to include materials, finishes, equipment, furnishings, and fixtures;
(f) coordinating professional services with other licensed practitioners;
(g) preparing and administering bids and contract documents as the client's agent;
(h) reviewing and evaluating design solutions after project completion.
(3) `Interior design' means services such as administering contracts for fabrication, procurement, or installation in the implementation of designs, drawings, and specifications for any interior design project and consultations, studies, drawings, and specifications in connection with space planning, furnishings, or the fabrication of nonstructural systems within interior spaces but specifically excluding mechanical and electrical systems, except for specifications of fixtures and their location within interior spaces.
Section 40-81-30. There is created the Interior Design Board, consisting of seven members appointed by the Governor, all of whom must be residents of this State. A member's term of office is for three years and until his successor is appointed and qualifies. A member's term commences on January first. A vacancy on the board must be filled in the same manner as original appointment for the unexpired portion of the term only.
Of the seven original members appointed to the board, two shall serve initial terms of one year, two shall serve initial terms of two years, and the remaining three shall serve initial terms of three years, all until their successors are appointed and qualify. Successors to the original members shall serve terms of three years and until their successors are appointed and qualify.
Four members of the seven-member board must be interior designers licensed in accordance with the provisions of this act, except that, in the case of the original licensed interior designer members of the board, these persons may be appointed conditionally and must obtain licensure within six months of their appointment. One member of the board must be a representative of the public at large and must not ever have been licensed as an interior designer or have any significant interest, direct or indirect, in the occupation regulated. One member must be an architect licensed in accordance with the laws of this State, and one member must be a full-time interior design educator at the college or university level.
The board shall elect a chairman, a vice-chairman, and any other officers the board considers necessary. Terms of office of board officers are one year, and officers may be reelected without limitation.
The board shall meet quarterly at Columbia to transact business and at any other time or place within the State designated by the chairman or by four members.
Four members constitute a quorum for the transaction of business. However, no final action may be taken on any matter unless at least four members vote in favor of a proposal.
Members of the board may receive no compensation for the performance of their duties but are allowed the usual mileage, per diem, and subsistence as provided by law for members of state boards, committees, and commissions while in the actual performance of their duties.
Section 40-81-40. The board has the following powers and duties:
(1) administer, coordinate, and enforce the provisions of this chapter. To this end the board may investigate allegations of violations of the provisions of this act and of any regulations promulgated pursuant to this chapter;
(2) promulgate regulations to carry out the purposes, policies, and provisions of this chapter;
(3) employ an executive director, who may not be a board member, and other employees and fix their annual compensation subject to appropriations for this purpose by the General Assembly in the annual general appropriation act;
(4) contract to obtain office space and administrative services;
(5) require a licensee, as a condition of the renewal of his license, to undergo continuing education requirements as set forth in this chapter;
(6) maintain an official roster showing the name, address, and license number of each interior designer licensed pursuant to this chapter;
(7) conduct hearings and keep records and minutes necessary to carry out its functions;
(8) sue and be sued and to do all other things reasonable and necessary to carry out the purposes, policies, and provisions of this chapter.
Section 40-81-50. The board shall fix the annual compensation of its executive director and other employees by resolution adopted at a regular quarterly meeting. The executive director and other employees may be reimbursed for necessary expenses incurred by them in carrying out their duties.
Section 40-81-60. Each applicant for a license as an interior designer shall apply to the board for licensure. Each applicant shall take and pass a standardized examination. The board may adopt the examination and grading procedures of the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) or an equivalent. For the purposes of this chapter, the term `accredited institution' means those institutions accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Universities or its equivalent. Beginning in the year 2000, the term `accredited institution' means those institutions whose interior design programs are accredited by the Foundation of Interior Design Education Research (FIDER). Before the examination, the applicant shall provide substantial evidence to the board that the applicant is:
(1) a graduate of a five-year interior design program from an accredited institution and has completed at least one year of diversified interior design experience;
(2) a graduate of a four-year interior design program from an accredited institution and has completed at least two years of diversified interior design experience;
(3) a graduate of a three-year interior design program from an accredited institution and has completed at least three years of diversified interior design experience; or
(4) a graduate of a two-year interior design program from an accredited institution and has completed at least four years of diversified interior design experience.
Section 40-81-70. (A) If a person applies for licensure within one year after the effective date of this chapter and that person has successfully completed at least six years of full-time, diversified experience in interior design, that person may be issued a license without passing the NCIDQ. However, each person who applies for licensure under this section must pass the Building and Barrier Free Codes portion of the NCIDQ within three years after licensure. Licensure pursuant to this subsection is subject to the board's discretionary review of the experience qualifications.
(B) The board shall accept, in lieu of examination, satisfactory evidence of licensure in another state, country, or United States territory where the qualifications are equal to or exceed those required by this chapter.
(C) The board shall accept, in lieu of examination, satisfactory evidence of registration or certification by the National Council for Interior Design Qualifications or satisfactory evidence of registration in accordance with the South Carolina Architectural Registration Law.
(D) To comply with the intent of this chapter and to reasonably assure the protection of the health, safety, and welfare of the people of this State, no applicant is exempt from the NCIDQ examination or the portion required by Section 40-81-70(A) unless the applicant is registered in accordance with the South Carolina Architectural Registration Law.
Section 40-81-80. (A) A license must be issued to every person who presents satisfactory evidence of possessing the qualifications of education, experience and, as appropriate, the examination performance required by the provisions of this chapter, as long as the applicant has reached the age of eighteen years and pays the required fees.
(B) Each original license authorizes the holder to use the title of, and be known as, an interior designer from the date of issuance to the next succeeding December thirty-first, unless the license is suspended or revoked.
(C) On or before December first of each year, each licensee shall apply for renewal and pay the required fees after which the license must be renewed for a period of one year beginning January first.
(D) A license may not be renewed until the licensee submits satisfactory evidence to the board that, during the last year, the licensee has participated in not less than eight actual class hours of continuing education approved by the board. The board shall approve only continuing education that builds upon basic knowledge of interior design or promotes professional practice. The board may make exceptions from the continuing education requirement in emergency or hardship cases.
(E) The holder of any license that has expired through failure to renew may renew the license at any time within six months from the date of expiration upon approval of the board. Penalties or additional fines, or both, must be determined by the board to cover this situation. Anyone failing to renew after six months, upon application by the board, is subject to reexamination and review as provided in this chapter.
(F) The board, by regulations, may promulgate policies and procedures providing for the establishment of an inactive status for licensees temporarily not engaged in the practice of interior design.
(G) In accordance with the provisions listed in this subsection, the board may deny, refuse to renew, suspend, or revoke a license or impose probationary conditions when the licensee or applicant for licensure has:
(1) obtained the license by means of fraud, misrepresentation, or concealment of material facts;
(2) committed any act of fraud or deceit in his professional conduct or been convicted of a felony;
(3) represented himself as an interior designer before being issued a license, except as authorized under the provisions of this chapter;
(4) been found by the board to have aided or abetted an unlicensed person in violating any of the provisions of this chapter, including regulations promulgated under the authority of this chapter; or
(5) failed to comply with any of the provisions of this chapter or any regulations promulgated pursuant to this chapter.
Section 40-81-90. (A) No person knowingly may:
(1) use the name or title of interior designer or interior design when the person is not the holder of a current, valid license issued pursuant to this chapter. However, an architect licensed by the Board of Architectural Examiners may use the name or title of interior designer or interior design if not licensed pursuant to this chapter, but such architects not licensed pursuant to this chapter may not refer to themselves as licensed interior designers;
(2) use or present as his own the license of another;
(3) give false or forged evidence to the board or a board member for the purpose of obtaining a license;
(4) use or attempt to use an interior design license which has been suspended, revoked, or placed on inactive status;
(5) conceal information relative to violations of this chapter or any regulations promulgated pursuant to this chapter.
(B) A person who fails to comply with any provision of subsection (A) of this section is subject to an administrative fine not to exceed two thousand dollars in the discretion of the board. Additionally, the person is subject to the penalties provided in Section 40-81-100 in the discretion of the board.
Section 40-81-100. Upon a finding by the board of a violation of the provisions of this chapter or any regulations promulgated pursuant to this chapter, the board may:
(1) refuse to approve an application for licensure;
(2) refuse to renew an existing license;
(3) revoke or suspend a license;
(4) impose an administrative fine;
(5) issue a reprimand; or
(6) invoke any combination of these penalties.
Section 40-81-110. (A) Nothing in this chapter may be construed as preventing or restricting the practice, services, or activities of:
(1) engineers licensed pursuant to the Engineering and Land Surveying Law of this State;
(2) architects licensed pursuant to the South Carolina Architectural Regulation Law;
(3) contractors licensed pursuant to the Contractors Licensing Law of this State;
(4) any interior decorator or individual offering interior decorating services, including, but not limited to, selection of surface materials, window treatments, wall coverings, paint, floor coverings, and lighting fixtures; or
(5) builders, home furnishings salespersons, or similar purveyors of goods and services relating to homemaking.
(B) Nothing contained in this chapter prevents a person from rendering or offering to render any of the services which constitute the practice of interior design, so long as the person does not use or identify himself by the title `interior designer' or `interior design', unless he is licensed in accordance with the provisions of this chapter or as otherwise provided by law.
(C) Nothing in this chapter may be construed to permit a licensed interior designer to engage in the practice of engineering as defined in the South Carolina Engineering and Land Surveying Law.
(D) Nothing in this chapter may be construed to permit a licensed interior designer to engage in the practice of architecture as defined in the South Carolina Architectural Registration Law.
(E) Nothing in this chapter prevents an interior designer, licensed pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, from associating with one or more interior designers, architects, professional engineers, landscape architects, surveyors, or other persons in partnership, joint venture, or corporation.
(F) A firm is permitted to use in its title the term `interior designer' and to be so identified on any sign, card, stationery device, or other means of identification if at least one partner, director, officer, or other supervisory agent of the firm is a licensed interior designer in this State. A firm is not required to include the names of all partners, directors, or officers in its title.
Section 40-81-120. The fees for the original license, late charges, or any other fees authorized by the provisions of this chapter must be set by regulation of the board. However:
(1) The fee for initial licensure may not exceed two hundred dollars an individual or two hundred fifty dollars a firm.
(2) The fee for annual renewal may be not more than one hundred dollars an individual or one hundred fifty dollars a firm.
(3) The fee for restoration of an expired license may not be more than one hundred fifty dollars.
(4) The fee for the restoration of a revoked or suspended license may not be more than two hundred dollars. The board may assess a penalty not to exceed one hundred dollars, which must be paid before the restoration of a revoked or suspended license.
(5) For the issuance of revised or duplicate license certificates, the fee may not exceed fifty dollars.
Section 40-81-130. (A) Interior design documents prepared by an interior designer must contain a statement that the document is not an architectural or engineering study, drawing, specification, or design and is not to be used as the basis for construction of any load-bearing framing, wall, or structure or alteration of structural integrity of any existing structural systems.
(B) Before entering into a contract, the interior designer clearly shall determine the scope and nature of the project and the methods of compensation. The interior designer shall disclose fully to the client the manner in which all compensation is to be paid and all conflicts of interest in accordance with regulations promulgated by the board. If an interior designer has any business association or direct or indirect financial interest which is substantial enough to influence judgments in connection with the performance of professional services, the interior designer shall fully disclose in writing to the client or employer the nature of the business association or financial interest, and if the client or employer objects to such association or financial interest, the interior designer shall either terminate such association or interest or offer to give up the commission or employment.
(C) An interior designer may not accept any form of compensation from a supplier of goods and services in cash or in kind, unless the interior designer first informs the client of the compensation in accordance with regulations promulgated by the board.
Section 40-81-140. There is created the `Interior Design Board Fund'. All funds received by the board and monies collected under this chapter must be deposited with the State Treasurer. The State Treasurer shall credit these funds and monies to the Interior Design Board Fund. Payments out of the Interior Design Board Fund must be on vouchers issued by the board's treasurer, or other appropriate officers, upon warrants drawn in accordance with state law. All amounts paid to the Interior Design Board Fund are subject to the order of the board and must be used for meeting necessary expenses incurred in executing the provisions of and duties under this chapter, for promoting interior design education and standards, and for promoting FIDER (Foundation for Interior Design Educational Research) for schools and universities in the State.
Section 40-81-150. Any person who violates any provision of this chapter is guilty of a misdemeanor and, upon conviction, must be fined in an amount not to exceed one thousand dollars or imprisoned for a term not to exceed six months, or both."
SECTION 3. This act takes effect upon approval by the Governor.