Scope and Content
Title: Inventory of the Records of the
Department of Consumer Affairs -
Contractors’ State License Board
Collection number: R122
Department of Consumer Affairs-Contractors’State License Board 1929-1988
29.5 cubic feet
California State Archives
Abstract: The records of the Contractors' State License Board (CSLB) contain 29.5 cubic feet of textual records spanning the years from
1929 to 1988. The records document the Board's work to protect consumers by licensing and regulating contractors.
Physical location: California State Archives
Languages represented in the collection:
While the majority of the records are open for research, any access restrictions are noted in the record series descriptions.
For permission to reproduce or publish, please contact the California State Archives. Permission for reproduction or publication
is given on behalf of the California State Archives as the owner of the physical items. The researcher assumes all responsibility
for possible infringement which may arise from reproduction or publication of materials from the California State Archives
[Identification of item], Department of Consumer Affairs – Contractors’ State License Board Records, R122.[series number],
[box and folder number], California State Archives, Office of the Secretary of State, Sacramento, California.
The Contractors’ State License Board, under the Department of Consumer Affairs, is a fifteen member board that consists of
five contractors and ten public members. The Governor and State Legislature appoint the public members, which include one
labor representative, one local building official, and one representative of a statewide senior citizen organization. The
goal of the Board is to protect consumers by regulating the construction industry. Major functions of the Board include issuing
contractor licenses, enforcement of laws and standards, administering examination to potential licensees, and investigation
of complaints against licensed and unlicensed contractors.
Regulation of contractors in California began with the passage of the Contractors’ State License Law, which became effective
on August 14, 1929 (Statutes of 1929, Chapter 791). The 1929 act appointed the Director of the Department of Professional
and Vocational Standards as the “registrar”, who was then tasked with maintaining an indexed record of contractor applications
and licenses. In 1931 an amendment was made to the act, which created a new registrar position and gave the Director of the
Department of Professional and Vocational Standards the authority to make appointments to the Registrar of Contractors (Statutes
of 1931, Chapter 578).
The Registrar of Contractors underwent changes again in 1933 and the Registrar was renamed the Bureau of Contractors’ Registration
(Statutes of 1933, Chapter 573). In 1935 the Bureau became the Contractors’ State License Board, the name that it maintains
currently, and jurisdiction was transferred from the Registrar to the Board (Statutes of 1935, Chapter 816). In 1970, under
the Governor’s Reorganization Plan No. 2, the Department of Professional and Vocational Standards was restructured and renamed
the Department of Consumer Affairs, which is the Department that the Board operates under as of 2014. Although there have
been several name and structural changes throughout its existence, the Contractors’ State License Board, and its predecessors,
has consistently aimed to regulate the construction industry through licensing and enforcement. With respect to consumer protection,
the Board has essentially maintained the same attitudes, beliefs, and concepts since the inception of the Agency.
Scope and Content
The records of the Contractors’ State License Board (CSLB) contain 29.5 cubic feet of textual records spanning the years from
1929 to 1988. The records document the Board’s work to protect consumers by licensing and regulating contractors. The records
are organized into the following record series: (1) License Files, (2) Board Meeting Minutes, (3) Board Meeting Transcripts,
(4) Minutes Documentary Files, (5) Legislative Files, (6) Examiner’s Files, (7) Press Clippings, (8) National Association
of State Contractors’ Licensing Agencies Files, (9) Staff Meeting Files, (10) Assistant Licensing Deputy Subject Files, (11)
Supervisor’s Meeting Files, (12) Board Files, (13) Executive Office Subject Files, and (14) Administrative Subject Files.
Meeting files, including minutes, transcripts, and documentary files, make up a significant portion of the Contractors’ State
License Board records, which document the proceedings and actions of each Board meeting and special hearing. These series
also provide insight to the Board’s role as a creator, keeper, and enforcer of rules and regulations placed on contractors.
In addition to the Board’s discussion of regulations, these series record construction industry news and consumer issues.
Subject Files make up another significant portion of the CSLB records, including those of the Assistant Licensing Deputy,
the Executive Office, and the Administrative function. Subject files provide information regarding the operations and management
of the CSLB outside of Board meetings. Additionally, these subject files provide a record of the various concerns, issues,
and changes that the CSLB faced as the construction industry evolved.
The remainder of the CSLB records includes legislative files, Examiners’ files, staff and supervisor meeting files, and press
clippings. Each of these series, in addition to those already listed, illustrate the changes the construction industry has
seen and extensively detail the history of the Contractor’s License Law which spans more than eighty years.
No further accruals are expected.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in
the library's online public access catalog.
California. Contractors' State License Board
Building laws - California