Electrical & General Licenses

I want to wish all my readers a Happy and Prosperous 2010. This last year has been a rough one for the construction industry. As we look forward to this New Year, let us hope that the perceived economic turn-a-round is real and the potential for recovery realized in the marketplace…

Q: I have heard of a situation where a license was transferred from one person to another and the receiving person did NOT take the license exam. Do you know of any special exemptions for this kind that we may be able to take advantage of? Thanks!

A: This exam waiver is only available to contractors whose license has been active and in good standing for 5 of the prior 7 years. Unfortunately your license was only issued a few years ago so you will be required to sit for the license exams.

Q: I have an “A” and a “B” license. I often bid on public work projects and do not list any electrical subcontractor since I intend on self-performing the “C-10” work. Losing bidders often challenge or protest the award on the basis that my bid is non-responsive because a licensed electrical subcontractor is not listed. They sometimes reference the requirement that my electricians must be certified. Do you have any literature / decisions from the CSLB showing that the holder of an “A” or “B” license can properly perform this specialty work?

A: Unsuccessful bidders have the right to make any claim they want even if it has no merit. They likely feel they have nothing to lose. I contacted the CSLB and they do not have any “decision” regarding this issue but did confirm what we discussed.

A General Building (“B”) contractor as defined in B&P Code 7057 can “DO OR SUPERINTEND THE WHOLE OR ANY PART” of a project including the electrical trade as long as the project uses at least two or more unrelated trades or crafts. General Engineering (“A”) contractors can self perform all or any part of an “A” project including the electrical portion. The issue of electricians being certified is only applicable to “C-10” contractors. General contractors using their own employees do not fall within this Apprenticeship standard.

Q: Where do I need to list my license number? I know most advertising requires it. Can you tell me if there’s a law I can look up that would answer my question?

A: Code Section 7030.5 states that “Every person licensed … shall include his license number in: (a) all construction contracts; (b) subcontracts and call for bids; and (c) all forms of advertising as prescribed by the registrar of contractors”. If in doubt, list your license number. You can’t go wrong by doing so but could run afoul of the law by leaving it off. You worked hard to get this license it’s an accomplishment you can be proud to share.