Turkey launches blockchain-based digital ID for government services: Weekly regulatory news 
blockchain digital ID
The Week in Brief is your weekly snapshot of regulatory news and what's happening in the world of professional licensing, government technology, and public policy. In this week's regulatory news, Turkey launches a blockchain-based ID for government services, the Canadian province of Newfoundland and Labrador also considers digital IDs, Britain launches a probe into gambling-related harm, and much more.

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Turkey launches blockchain-based digital ID for government services 

Turkey has announced it will launch a blockchain-based digital identity app for citizens accessing online public services. The Turkish government already manages E-Devlet, an extensive online portal citizens use to access a wide variety of services. The app, which will also allow users to securely store data on their mobile phones, would provide an alternative to other forms of authentication. Despite making digitization a high priority in recent years, the Turkish government’s digital initiatives have not been fully realized and a 2019 plan for a national blockchain infrastructure has stalled. Read more at Cointelegraph Turkey.

NL considers digital identification pilot project 

At least one Canadian province is also investigating digital IDs. Newfoundland and Labrador hopes to launch a digital ID pilot project meant to give the provincial government the ability to confirm identities electronically. The province wants to minimize fraud potential with a digital ID that would better secure sensitive information contained on, for example, a physical driver’s license, including address, birthdate, and license number.  

While the pilot project lacks confirmed funding and is only in its preliminary stages, it signals the province’s commitment to digitizing. It follows a 2022 joint resolution by provincial, territorial, and federal privacy commissioners to monitor the development of digital identity initiatives. Read more about it at CBC News. 

UK inquiry studies gambling-related harm, regulation 

A new probe in Britain will look into the extent of gambling-related harm and what regulatory changes are required to further protect the public. The Department of Digital, Media, Culture, and Sport (DCMS) will ask a number of specific questions to ascertain the scale of gambling-related harm, determine whether regulators can keep pace with digital innovation, and uncover other problems that arise when online gambling companies are based outside of the UK.  

The probe follows calls for more action to protect people from gambling-related harm. The investigation will proceed in parallel with the UK government’s ongoing review of gambling laws, which commenced in 2020 with the spirit of developing gambling regulation suitable for a digital age. The review wrapped up in 2022 and a report on reforms is expected. Read more at Local Government Lawyer or directly from the UK Parliament site.

Ohio to recognize out-of-state licensing credentials 

A new bill signed into law by Ohio Governor Mike DeWine will require occupational licensing authorities to provide licenses to those that have equivalent licenses or other relevant credentials or experience in other states. Senate Bill 131 demands that licensing boards issue licenses or government certifications to applicants with a license, government or private certification, or satisfactory work experience in another state under certain circumstances. However, it will maintain State Teacher Retirement System membership as a requirement for certain school psychologists. It also prevents individuals from registering as credit services organizations and being licensed as manufacturers or wholesalers of fireworks. Read about it and a flurry of other bills DeWine signed into law last week at The Highland County Press. 

Texas law loosens barber, cosmetology requirements 

A Texas law to simplify barber and cosmetology licensing came into effect alongside a number of other bills passed during recent legislative sessions. The law, HB 1560, amends rules affecting the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) and will effectively consolidate the licenses and certificates for barbers and cosmetologists while eliminating what have deemed to be unnecessary regulations within those fields. It also makes modifications to or removes provisions of codes related to alcoholic beverages, criminal procedure, education, occupations, and transportation for the TDLR as well as the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation, its governing board and policy-making body. 

The law will require risk-based inspections, a statistical analysis of complaints, and a study on regulating auctioneering and removing licensing requirements for polygraph examiners. Read more about it and other Texas laws that just took effect at Athens Daily Review. 

More news:

  • Oregon has become the first state to allow the use of psilocybin mushrooms for adults as long as they are supervised by a licensed facilitator. It’s the result of a 2020 ballot measure directing the Oregon Health Authority to license and regulate psilocybin products and the provision of psilocybin services. 
  • Dubai has ended a 30% tax on alcohol and made liquor licenses free to obtain in order to further boost tourism to the emirate. 

Also noteworthy: 

Disclaimer: The thoughts, opinions, and commentary of the articles we share links to in Week in Brief do not necessarily reflect those of Ascend Magazine or Thentia. 

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Paul Leavoy
Written byPaul Leavoy
Paul Leavoy is Editor of Ascend Magazine and writes on occupational licensing, regulation, digital government, and public policy.

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Health Care Regulation
Ohio lawmakers consider bill to localize licensure appeals: Weekly regulatory news 

The Week in Brief is your weekly snapshot of regulatory news and what's happening in the world of professional licensing, government technology, and public policy.
Ohio lawmakers consider bill to localize state agency licensure appeals, Canadian Medical Association welcomes new rules enabling health worker mobility in Ontario, and more in this week’s look at regulatory news.

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