If you’re a geoscientist who has not yet formally applied for licensure to practice your trade in Louisiana, don’t despair.
The registration deadline has moved – once again.
This latest one zeroes in on the end of 2014, and it appears to be a done deal.
It’s all about the Louisiana Geosciences Practice Act, which was signed into law as Act 974 by Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal in 2010.
This is one of three legislative Acts governing the Louisiana Board of Professional Geoscientists (LBPG), established for the practice of the geological profession in Louisiana.
Even though Act 974 became effective Jan. 1, 2011, there was still considerable fine-tuning needed, such as finalizing application forms. Final approval also required legislative scrutiny, which further delayed the process.
The initial grandfather deadline was set for Jan. 1, 2012 – but this, too, quickly became problematic.
“I was concerned about such a close deadline and began working in mid-October of 2011 to extend this with the goal that we must be fair to all,” said AAPG member Madhurendu B. Kumar, chairman of the LBPG and its initial appointed member.
A new grandfather deadline was set for Dec. 31, 2013.
Still not enough time, apparently.
“A number of geoscientists applied late for the grandfathered status,” Kumar said. “Many of them missed the opportunity because of the limited short time frame allowed.
“In order to resolve such a problematic situation, I worked on behalf of the Board on legislation with Louisiana House Representative Hunter Green,” Kumar noted. “As a result, H.B. 165, authored by Representative Greene, passed unanimously in the House and Senate and was approved by the governor as Act 228.
Under this new law, the deadline for grandfather applications has been extended to Dec. 31, 2014.
According to Kumar, the Board received about 1,600 applications prior to the previous 2013 year-end deadline.
Given the new extension, they expect more to arrive.
“Those who are supposed to be registered or licensed need to complete the application forms approved by the Board,” Kumar cautioned.
The website is at www.lbopg.org.
“The new law permits the LPBG to use the licensee examinations given by the American Association of State Boards of Geologists,” he added.