New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez (R) last week signed a bill designed to help military personnel, their spouses and veterans more easily obtain occupational licenses in a range of fields if they already are qualified or certified in another state.
The law covers a broad set of professional occupations such as barbers, architects and veterinarians, along with health care providers such as physicians, pharmacists, dentists and physical therapists. The legislation requires state boards and agencies to expedite the process for awarding occupational licenses to current members of the armed forces, their spouses and recent veterans if they have a valid license from another state and have met requirements similar to those in New Mexico.
Currently 19 other states exempt service members, recent veterans and spouses from a lengthy certification process if they are already licensed in another state, according to a release from the office of the governor.
“This legislation will end the burdensome process of requiring these already-licensed nurses, teachers, counselors and other professionals to start over from the beginning when they are transferred to our state,” Martinez said.