LINCOLN – On August 16th, the Nebraska Board of Engineers and Architects marks its 83rd year regulating the practices of engineering and architecture in Nebraska in order to protect life, health and property and promote the public welfare.
The Board was created by the Nebraska Unicameral Legislature by enacting Legislative Bill 14, which became effective on August 16, 1937. The Board ensures that those who practice architecture and engineering are competent, and also enforces the Engineers and Architects Regulation Act. To be licensed, architects and professional engineers must meet rigorous education, experience, and examination standards. The Act also mandates that architects and professional engineers must be involved in the design of buildings and structures of significant size or complexity.
Today, the Board is comprised of four professional engineers, three architects, and one member of the public. In its first year, the Board, which was initially called the State Board of Examiners for Professional Engineers and Architects, consisted of three engineers and two architects. Since then, the Board has licensed more than 5,100 architects and 18,200 professional engineers.
In the 1920s and 1930s, Nebraskans witnessed several unfortunate events including a dam collapse, flooding caused by new but unproven water systems, and a newly-built schoolhouse crumbling at its foundations. These incidents served as the catalyst for the creation of the Nebraska Board of Engineers and Architects to protect the health, safety, and welfare of all citizens and visitors in Nebraska.
The Board, to this day, still regulates the safe and competent practice of engineering and architecture in the state through the Engineers and Architects Regulation Act. The Act contains the statutes that describe when licensees are required. Board Rules – Title 110 of the Nebraska Administrative Code – further clarify provisions of the E&A Act. Both the E&A Act and Board Rules can be found online at ea.nebraska.gov/ea-act.
The law ensures that licensed architects and professional engineers are qualified to practice by meeting rigorous education, experience, and examination standards; and mandates that architects and professional engineers must be involved in the design of buildings and structures of significant size or complexity.