House-passed legislation to license sign-language interpreters in Idaho has cleared a Senate committee and headed to the full Senate. HB 46 passed the Senate Commerce Committee this afternoon with just two “no” votes, from Sens. Mary Souza, R-Coeur d’Alene, and Todd Lakey, R-Nampa.
Rep. Kelley Packer, R-McCammon, the bill’s lead sponsor, told the senators that licensing legislation passed both houses two years ago and was vetoed by the governor, but that led to a better bill this year. Backers of the bill worked with Idaho’s court system and others to develop the bill, which merges sign language interpreter licensing with an existing state licensing board on audiology and speech pathology.