Federal Judge Rules Oregon Law Defining ‘Engineer’ Violates Free Speech

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Federal Judge Rules Oregon Law Defining 'Engineer' Violates Free Speech

On Friday, December 28, 2018, U.S. Magistrate Judge Stacie F. Beckerman declared that certain parts of Oregon’s state law and its administrative rules governing engineering practices violate the First Amendment. The case was originally filed by Mats Järlström of Beaverton against the Oregon Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying.

For more information, read the article at the Oregon Live website here.

Read the ruling here.

OSBEELS previously conceded to violating free speech here.

Wendell

Wendell

Wendell was a Land Surveyor for 26 years, then moved on to building websites for his second career. But he never lost sight of the surveying community and the other disciplines related to surveying. He's purposely stayed involved in the surveying industry because he has always been — and will continue to be — a Land Surveyor at heart.

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RADAR
Member
thebionicman
Member

Not at all suprising. Glad to see they left the essentials intact. 

aliquot
Member

It’s time that state boards turn their attention to protecting the public and away from protecting the professions like a jealous four year old. 

A Harris
Member

The whole thing brings to mind that medical nurse and hair stylist and manicurists must become certified for each state they work in as if there is any special purpose needed to be able to perform their services differently where ever they may apply their training, especially for their own needs and to assist people in an emergency.I know doctors and nurses who would never stop and give aid to people after accidents because their current insurance would not cover them outside their clinic. Too many have been sued and lost most everything because a person they tried to help… Read more »

Williwaw
Member

I know doctors and nurses who would never stop and give aid to people after accidents because their current insurance would not cover them outside their clinic. Too many have been sued and lost most everything because a person they tried to help did not fully recover or past away after them giving aid on the side of the highway or in a store or on a sidewalk.https://journalofethics.ama-assn.org/article/good-samaritan-statutes-are-medical-volunteers-protected/2004-04

A Harris
Member

https://abcnews.go.com/TheLaw/story?id=6498405&page=1https://biotech.law.lsu.edu/map/AssistingatAccidents.htmlWhen I was 19 I stopped and found my friend beside the highway about a mile from home where he had hit one of my uncle’s black angus cows. I stopped and he got up and crawled into my car and I drove him 4mi to the emergency room. I almost went to jail for helping him had it not been that another uncle that was Sheriff and had me take an oath and promised him to not ever do it again.Don’t ever expect that your efforts will be appreciated when excrement hits the fan.

Bill93
Member

I almost went to jail for helping him

On what charge??

Bill93
Member

Most states have some form of Good Samaritan law that makes volunteer assistance immune if there is no recklessness.Some even require bystanders to provide assistance they are capable of, even if that is just calling 911.

R.J. Schneider
Member

Isn’t here a case pending in Mississippi where a couple of old loan officers got together, formed a company, and are now peddling aerial photos with colored lines representing boundaries – using the same impinging their right to free speech defense ?

Bill93
Member

It’s not free speech if they are selling it.

thebionicman
Member

If this case is at all instructive for Mississippi, the loan officers will lose…

A Harris
Member

@Bill93The Doctor, owner and administrator (Dr Merrit) of the hospital and ambulance service wanted to charge me with hindering the aid of the medical team sent for my friend.The ambulance (station wagon type like from Ghost Busters) was pulling out of the front of the parking lot of the Hospital when I arrived at the Emergency Room at the back of the Hospital.Evidently Kyle had a head like a rock. He was released hours later with a bruised ego a mild concussion as his father was not going to pay for a nights stay in the hospital.Six weeks earlier he… Read more »

Dave Karoly
Member

In California “Engineer” and “Surveyor” are not reserved titles. Add “Civil” and “Land” respectively to the front and then they are reserved titles.Sometime in the 80s or 90s the local agencies revised their Civil Engineering Technician classifications to Engineering Technician because of this. My Father was an EIT “Assistant Civil Engineer” in the 1950s which is a non-compliant classification title so they are now “Assistant Engineer.” “Associate Civil Engineer” is acceptable because this class typically requires a PE license. The State has non-compliant classifications such as “Civil Engineering Associate” but maybe the Board doesn’t have authority over State agencies.Caltrans created… Read more »

Tim V. PLS
Member

My view on this evolved as the case proceeded. Previous comments on this topic continued to inform my view.My initial knee-jerk reaction that Mr. Järlström shouldn’t use the term engineer to describe himself was wrong. That initial view also was inconsistent with my thoughts on other topics.Humbly I admit I was wrong.   I might have to show this to my wife… “Look, babe. See, I can admit I was wrong…”

MightyMoe
Member

I never understood the board’s obsession with this guy. He is similar to my BIL who couldn’t call himself an electrical engineer in this country because he didn’t have the prerequisite interpretive dance class or whatever US universities wanted him to have that would allow him to take the PE. He was an administrator at the UK central power authority before coming here, but what the heck, can’t do that without the Shakespeare class from Uni. The amazing part of the story is that Mats Järlström stuck it out and took it as far as he did. He must be an… Read more »

thebionicman
Member

Posted by: MightyMoeI never understood the board’s obsession with this guy. He is similar to my BIL who couldn’t call himself an electrical engineer in this country because he didn’t have the prerequisite interpretive dance class or whatever US universities wanted him to have that would allow him to take the PE. He was an administrator at the UK central power authority before coming here, but what the heck, can’t do that without the Shakespeare class from Uni. The amazing part of the story is that Mats Järlström stuck it out and took it as far as he did. He must… Read more »

MightyMoe
Member

Posted by: thebionicman Posted by: MightyMoeI never understood the board’s obsession with this guy. He is similar to my BIL who couldn’t call himself an electrical engineer in this country because he didn’t have the prerequisite interpretive dance class or whatever US universities wanted him to have that would allow him to take the PE. He was an administrator at the UK central power authority before coming here, but what the heck, can’t do that without the Shakespeare class from Uni. The amazing part of the story is that Mats Järlström stuck it out and took it as far as he… Read more »

thebionicman
Member

Your post implied the the hangup was that our universities demanded he take some useless class. It doesnt work that way.  Applications are not reviewed by educational institutions, they are reviewed by boards under the laws imposed by thier legislatures. If those boards begin issuing licenses outside those laws they will lose thier jobs and possibly the ability of the board to regulate.I have no doubt there were hoops to jump through, but still believe it better to frame it with the history and facts.IMO the Oregon board was in defense mode over the current trend to eliminate regulation. The… Read more »

Norman Oklahoma
Member

Posted by: thebionicman….IMO the Oregon board was in defense mode over the current trend to eliminate regulation. The over-reaction backfired and the courts ruled properly.  10 years ago, when things were slow, I attended several meetings of the board as an observer for PLSO. I got put on the boards mailing list for sub-committee meeting agendas, minutes, and such, and am still on it. I was there enough to be on a first name basis with the board members of that day. The makeup of the board has rolled over a couple of times since then, so none of the current… Read more »

MightyMoe
Member

Posted by: thebionicmanYour post implied the the hangup was that our universities demanded he take some useless class. It doesnt work that way.  Applications are not reviewed by educational institutions, they are reviewed by boards under the laws imposed by thier legislatures. If those boards begin issuing licenses outside those laws they will lose thier jobs and possibly the ability of the board to regulate.I have no doubt there were hoops to jump through, but still believe it better to frame it with the history and facts.IMO the Oregon board was in defense mode over the current trend to eliminate… Read more »

Mark Mayer
Member

The Oregon Board is taking a pounding here, but I do not think it should be. The board enforced the letter of Oregon Statutory Law.The court ruled the law, as written,  unconstitutional.  Note that relevant state law, reproduced below, defines the simple use of the word “engineer” as equivalent to “Professional Engineer”. Significantly, it does not similarly consider “Surveyor” to be equivalent to “Professional Land Surveyor” or any of it’s variants.  So any person can go about in Oregon calling themselves a Surveyor, but not – until now – Engineer.  Note that this is the statutory law, passed by the… Read more »

Dave Karoly
Member

He poked the bear repeatedly and P-O’d enough people that they took action.  I’m not saying that’s right, wrong, or indifferent but it is politics.

RADAR
Member

So any person can go about in Oregon calling themselves a SurveyorI’ve told people that I am a Surveyor; and they’ve asked me if I go door to door asking stupid questions…An ‘engineer’ is pretty obvious, but a surveyor could be a lot of different things.I was working on a boundary in a residential neighborhood the other day and the neighbor came out and asked what I was doing. I told him I was surveying the neighbors property and he asked what that was.There’s a lot of people out there that are clueless…

Norman Oklahoma
Member

Posted by: RADARSo any person can go about in Oregon calling themselves a SurveyorI’ve told people that I am a Surveyor; and they’ve asked me if I go door to door asking stupid questions…An ‘engineer’ is pretty obvious, but a surveyor could be a lot of different things.I was working on a boundary in a residential neighborhood the other day and the neighbor came out and asked what I was doing. I told him I was surveying the neighbors property and he asked what that was.There’s a lot of people out there that are clueless… I hold that the term… Read more »

A Harris
Member

Texas went thru the change to reflect surveyors as Registered Professional Land Surveyors about 30± years ago to clerify the distinction between what we do and what Engineers, layout crews and pipeliners, DOT and others do.We even got our license certificates upgraded with our new graphics to reflect the change.For the rules and laws to reflect the political correctness of reality, the wordings of the law need to be changed to describe those changes.There ain’t no common sense hardly ever used pertaining to what legal dogs sniff around and come of with. Mostly their time is spent finding cracks in… Read more »

MightyMoe
Member

Well that brings into focus what is going on.

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