Should contractors have a license?
By Robert Koci
In Cape Breton, Nova Scotia contractors anxiously await the verdict of a licensing bylaw that is currently in the works. Rick Fraser, the chief building official for the Cape Breton Regional Municipality, says the licensing bylaw will provide an equal playing field for all.
He believes the requirements under the new bylaw should include requiring renovators to own a particular contracting license, provide warranties and ensure a certain quality of work. He says this will protect homeowners from being held liable under home insurance policy for any injuries workers may face on their property. The reality is some contractors may not have sufficient amounts of overhead to ensure the safety of their employees.
The proposed licensing bylaw will be brought before a licensing steering committee and from there it will be subjected to a public hearing. Councillor Kevin Saccary, who is against the draft bylaw, argues that this may leave many contractors out in the cold. Fraser disagrees and is pushing to have this regulation in place by next year.
Heidi Filici is a freelance writer based in Toronto and a part-time contributor to Canadian Contractor. firstname.lastname@example.org