Tuesday, May 28, 2024

House committee advances bill that reduces hours needed to obtain a cosmetology license in Louisiana

by BIZ Magazine

By Chloe Gehman, LSU Manship School News Service 

BATON ROUGE–The House Commerce Committee advanced a bill Monday that would reduce the hours required to obtain a cosmetology license in Louisiana. 

The reduction would change the minimum requirement from 1,500 to 1,200 hours but would not take away the requirement that all students must pass a national exam to become licensed in Louisiana.

House Bill 470 would require the Board of Cosmetology to create a website through which students could apply, pay fees and see their progress toward a license.

Schools would be allowed to require more than the proposed 1,200-hour minimum of instruction in hair styling, nail treatments and other esthetics.

The proposed cut in required hours raised concerns with schools about how TOPS and PELL grant recipients could see a drop in financial aid.

One of the biggest concerns of the committee was what would be taken out of the curriculum to cut 300 hours.

“What concerns me is not necessarily the hours that are being reduced but the content that’s being reduced,” Rep. Polly Thomas, R-Metairie, said.

Sarah Dugas, the director of Compass Career College in Hammond, said that many of the hours would be cut from practical instruction and not theory.

Rep. Paula Davis, a Republican from Baton Rouge who chairs the committee, had to ask the audience to remain quiet while testimony was being given.

Vivian Glaze, a cosmetologist out of Pineville who was vice chairman of the Board of Cosmetology for four years, was outspoken about her opposition to the proposed bill.

“You don’t know how to be a cosmetologist,” Glaze said to the representatives, “so how can you vote yes?”

Glaze then referred to a witness who owned men’s haircutting shops and supported the bill as “a dude who wants to put a bunch of little girls out of beauty school in tight shirts to do 15- minute haircuts. It’s wrong. Period.”

 The bill’s author, Rep. Mary DuBuisson, R-Slidell, closed by apologizing to the witness.

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