Bipartisan Licensure Legislation Passes House, Moves to Senate

OKLAHOMA CITY — A bipartisan measure to remove barriers to employment for Oklahomans released from prison passed the House last week, 82-10.

House Bill 3002, by Rep. Cyndi Munson, D-Oklahoma City, and Sen. Zack Taylor, R-Seminole, amends the requirements and qualifications for five occupational licenses. The licensure changes involve the Oklahoma scrap metal dealers, the Oklahoma Alcoholic Beverage Control Act, motor vehicle dealers, used motor vehicle dealers, and the Oklahoma Micropigmentation Regulation Act.

The legislation maintains the licensing entity’s ability to consider an applicant’s criminal history, but hiring authorities must identify whether the applicant’s crime substantially relates to the occupation and poses a reasonable threat to public safety.

“House Bill 3002 provides employment opportunities for recently incarcerated Oklahomans,” said Munson.“These opportunities are key to keeping Oklahoma’s recidivism rate low and ensuring Oklahomans leaving state custody have a chance to succeed.”

Recidivism is the tendency of a convicted criminal to repeat a crime after already receiving punishment or serving their sentence.

Currently, 20% of Oklahomans leaving incarceration return to the Oklahoma criminal justice system, according to World Population Review.

H.B. 3002 is now available to be heard and voted on in the Senate.