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Maryland Governor Hogan increases occupational licensure, decreases competition

5 Aug
From where I sit in neighboring Washington, D.C., Maryland GOP Governor Larry Hogan often seems to be one of those limited government oriented Republicans who makes you want to prevent the LP from running a candidate in that particular race against him.

He did kind of endorse Chris Christie last week, which was a bad sign.  But otherwise he does seem to want to cut spending and taxes in his state, whose economy is stalled and which is losing all its productive, taxpaying citizens to Virginia, and other states in the South and mid-Atlantic.

Today (as a licensed realtor in Maryland) I received the following announcement that I am being protected from competition by lawyers and others, who could previously engage in brokerage without taking the (incredibly boring and irrelevant, especially mandatory Fair Housing law) courses I am forced to sit through and pay for every two years:

An official communication from the Maryland Real Estate Commission:

Dear Licensee:

A New Law.

Legislation drafted by the Maryland Association of REALTORS® and signed into law by Governor Hogan on
April 14 will simplify continuing education (CE) requirements for agents and brokers.

The new law mandates 15 hours of CE for every renewal by removing from the law an exception for licensees
who have earned a graduate degree in real estate or law. More frequent agency and broker supervision course
 work will also be required, effective with licenses that expire October 1, 2015 or thereafter.

The law will now require all real estate licensees to take the three hour agency class every two years, an
increase over the old law which provided for the agency class every four years. Similarly, those licensees
required to take the broker supervision three hour class, must do so every two years. Broker supervision is
a requirement for brokers, team leaders and branch office managers.

Eliminated from the old law is the CE provision that allowed real estate licensees who possess a graduate
 degree in law or real estate to renew with only 7.5 CE hours. Under the new law, these licensees must
take at least 15 hours of CE. Which is exactly the same number of hours as everyone else.

Licensees who have an expiration date of October 1, 2015 or later should ensure that they have taken an
approved 3 hour agency class within the previous two years. Those who must take broker supervision should
 do the same with the supervision class. The Commission’s website has a further notification of the new law

Steven Long, Assistant Executive Director
Maryland Real Estate Commission
Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation
500 North Calvert Street, 3rd Floor
Baltimore MD 21202