My understanding is that the ROC regulates the service industry. Put in place to protect the consumer with a recovery fund that refunds money on bad projects. The recovery fund I was told, is broke. If you provide a service to a homeowner or a business owner where you make any changes (structural or non-structural) to the existing property, the state of Arizona makes the business owner providing the service take two tests. One, testing your knowledge of the industry and two, testing your knowledge of running a business in AZ. AZ has all sorts of city licensing for contractors so they need you to know how to pay the government. The business owner must pay for the license (commercial and residential in my case), purchase a bond and testing, including: study materials and time involved with the process, and this is a renewable license. There are even civilian businesses that will help you through the process for a few hundred dollars. Sounds all well and good for those collecting the money. What about those that are starting a business in an economy where no one is lending? Especially construction related. If I were to start a non construction related business the government could care less if I knew what I was doing or not.

I am from Minnesota. If we made structural changes to an existing property or new construction, the government is always overseeing the project to be sure it is up to code and done properly through the purchase of building permits. The only test was whether you could do the project and pass the code. The test of the free market and less government regulation. Then I move to Surprise, AZ. I thought it was more conservative here. Less government regulation. Arizona has no problem collecting for both, the ROC contractors license and city and local permits. I suppose everybody gets a share of the money, like paying the mob.

Forced to start a business with little money, I have to work without my ROC. I am working to have the license by this summer, that is if I can make enough money. The process costs close two $2000 and that is 2 months rent to keep my family sheltered. I do not qualify for certain projects because of the ROC and most reputable construction companies won’t even look at me for contract work. My company is licensed and insured to $1,000,000 and I do not make structural changes to new and existing buildings. If a handyman can do what I do without the ROC license, I’m not sure why I need one. I have over 20 years in my industry and the government has no place making me get a ROC license. They do not have a test for window tinting, only the business portion. If that is the case why shouldn’t the insurance man that decides to start a business have to get a license from the state knowing how to run a business?

In this economy businesses like mine need less government. Make us get a permit if we do something structural and make us pass a code. Don’t try to teach me how to run my business because, unlike the government I do not have the taxpayers subsidizing my salary.