Fed up with being underbid by fly-by-nighters, some established masonry contractors are clamoring for either voluntary certification or mandatory licensing programs at the state or national level. These contractors feel that comprehensive written tests can help weed out those whose shoddy workmanship and unethical business practices sully the image of the craft.

MCAA Program on the Horizon
One long-range goal of the Mason Contractors Association of America (MCAA) is to develop a national masonry contractor certification program. Establishing national certification probably will take several years. One obstacle is an almost automatic resistance to change. Another is MCAA's desire to avoid liability risks.

Need for Direction
Whether voluntary certification or mandatory licensing would be more effective remains to be seen. It's clear, though, that many in the industry see a need for an objective system to winnow the good contractors from the bad.