Legal Updates: From Restrictive Credentialing Legislation to

an Expansive new Data Privacy Law


ATP continues to monitor current issues that have the potential to impact the testing industry from legislative attempts to restrict Certification/ Licensure/Credentialing programs, to a mandatory five-year review of an International Standard (ISO TAG 1667) that impacts assessment in employment, to a Fiscal 2019 Educational Appropriations bill, to a California Privacy Law with global implications.

"The ATP continues to have its work cut out for the coming year," reported ATP's General Counsel, Alan Thiemann. He noted that ATP is putting together a position paper addressing the Certification/Licensure/Credentialing issue, on which ATP took a lead role earlier in the year. "Back in  May, the ATP wrote to every member of the Louisiana Senate Commerce, Consumer Protection, and International Affairs Committee, expressing ‘grave concern’ over a recently passed House initiative -- The Occupational Licensing Review Act, House Bill No. 748 (“HB 748”) -- which", he said, "would have had a significant harmful impact on ATP Members."  The harmful language was removed from the final Bill in Louisiana, but Thiemann cautioned that such language is likely to surface again in other states. "It has been our experience in the past that when issues rear their head in one state, it will not be long before other states follow suit."

In regard to ISO 10667, Thiemann reported that this standard, the development of which ATP actively participated, is undergoing a mandatory five-year review. He explained that ATP has joined the U.S. Technical Advisory Group for ISO/TC 260 in order to protect the original objectives of the standards which covers assessment service delivery, procedures and methods to assess people in work and organizational settings. He explained that Part I of the standard outlines requirements for the Client, while Part 2 sets out requirements for the Service Provider.  Thiemann reported that there has been agreement that the scope of ISO 10667 should not change, so the work to date has focused on updating language dealing with test security, privacy, and test taker accessibility.

As for the Educational Appropriations Bill, Thiemann reported that the U.S. Senate passed a bill in August that includes funding for the Department of Education. The Senate bill increases FY’19 federal spending in education by about $500 million, up to a total of about $71.6 billion, including for Title I, IDEA, and Pell Grants.  

And on the data privacy front, Thiemann reported that California has passed a Consumer Privacy law that is scheduled to go into effect on January 1, 2020.  He noted that this new law grants consumers unprecedented control over their personal information used by companies for marketing.  Amendments to the law were made in September, including delaying the effective date until July 1, 2020, although the state Attorney General will be issuing regulations that require companies to demonstrate efforts to comply by January 1.  He noted that many consider this legislation as opening the door for GDPR-like privacy regulation in the United States and that the Internet Association (whose members include Microsoft and Google) has come out in favor of national legislation in order to avoid piecemeal regulation of privacy at the state level.  Thiemann said that ATP will closely monitor future developments in order to provide testing organizations with up-to-date information on this important topic.