01-015-O
ORDINANCE NO. __________

AN ORDINANCE PERTAINING TO THE LICENSING OF MASSAGE THERAPISTS; INCREASING THE EDUCATIONAL REQUIREMENTS; AMENDING SECTION 5-37 OF THE DULUTH CITY CODE, 1959, AS AMENDED.

BY PRESIDENT EDWARDS:

        The city of Duluth does ordain:

                Section 1.     That Section 5-37 of the Duluth City Code, 1959, as amended, is amended to read as follows:

Sec. 5-37. Massage therapists; employment relationships; licenses required.

        (a)     No massage establishment licensee shall permit any person to perform a massage in the licensee's massage establishment unless such person is an employee of said licensee and unless such person is licensed as a massage therapist as provided herein. No person shall massage another for compensation unless such person has obtained a massage therapist license as provided herein and unless such person is the licensee of said massage establishment or an employee of the licensee of said massage establishment or is lawfully engaging in a massage practice as a home occupation under the terms of Chapter 50 of this Code;
        (b)     Massage therapist licenses shall be issued by the city clerk after approval by the chief of police. Applicant must be 18 years of age or over, of good moral character, and eligible for a license under the terms of Minnesota Statutes, Chapter 364 and the provisions of this Article. Applicant must also have successfully completed a course of study in massage of not less than 40 500 hours from a recognized school where the theory, method, profession or work of massage is taught; except that any person licensed as a massage therapist before (effective date of ordinance) may continue to receive a license notwithstanding the fact such therapist has less than 500 hours of training. Applicant shall submit a diploma, certificate or other written proof of educational attainment with the application, including the name and address of the school;
        (c)     An application for such license shall be filed with the city clerk, which application shall state the name, address, date of birth, criminal record and other pertinent information as required by the chief of police. Upon receipt of the application the chief of police shall cause all necessary investigations to be made so that he may approve or disapprove of the license;
        (d)     The fee for such license shall be $15 per year. The license year shall be from May 1 to April 30 and shall not be prorated.

                Section 2.     That this ordinance shall take effect and be in force 30 days from and after its passage and publication.


STATEMENT OF PURPOSE:  This ordinance raises the amount of required training for a massage therapist license in Duluth from 40 hours to 500 hours. 500 hours of training is the generally accepted national standard for massage therapist certification. Local massage therapists have requested this amendment to protect the integrity of this industry. The police department agrees that the amendment is appropriate. The city's initial massage parlor ordinance was primarily an anti-prostitution ordinance and set a very low training requirement. The ordinance was effective in eliminating "massage parlors" as they were then known but did not set a realistic standard for legitimate therapeutic massage practitioners. This ordinance "grandfathers" therapists already receiving city licenses so no one will lose their existing license as the result of the higher standard.