Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday conditionally vetoed a bill that would eliminate licensure requirements for hair braiders, seeking to maintain a much more modest licensing requirement.
The version of the bill passed by the legislature – passed with overwhelming support in both chambers and with the backing of groups like the state’s branch of Americans for Prosperity – would have completely eliminated a requirement for hair braiders to complete 1,200 hours of courses at a cosmetology school that could cost up to $17,000.
But Murphy, concerned about a total lack of formal training could expose customers to health risks due to a lack of schooling sanitation practices, proposed training programs that not exceeding 40 or 50 hours in length, depending on the experience of the person seeking licensure.
That argument didn’t hold much water with the bill’s proponents.
“Governor Murphy is so disconnected from the hair braiding community in New Jersey it would be impossible to untangle a single comprehensive reason for vetoing this effort,” said AFP-NJ Director Erica Jedynak, adding later: “This veto is nothing short of heartless because it forces New Jersey hair braiders to keep the doors to their businesses and communities shuttered.”