TITLE 22. EXAMINING BOARDS

PART 17. TEXAS STATE BOARD OF PLUMBING EXAMINERS

CHAPTER 365. LICENSING AND REGISTRATION

22 TAC §§365.1, 365.2, 365.4 - 365.8, 365.10, 365.13 - 365.23

The Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners (Board) proposes amendments to the rules set forth in 22 TAC §§365.1, 365.2, 365.4 - 365.8, 365.10, and 365.13. The Board also proposes new 22 TAC §§365.14 - 365.23. The Board proposes these new sections concurrently with the proposed repeal of the existing §§365.14 - 365.17. The individual, substantive changes made to each section as it existed prior to the repeal are explained below.

The amendments to §365.1, concerning License, Endorsement and Registration Categories; Description; Scope of Work Permitted, delete "Description" from the title of the rule. New language is added to more closely align the scope of work a Responsible Master Plumber may perform with statute. References throughout the rule to "contracts…secured by a Responsible Master Plumber" are changed to "contracts… secured by a Responsible Master Plumber or a person who has secured the services of a Responsible Master Plumber in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules" to clarify that a Responsible Master Plumber does not have to personally secure every contract for plumbing work performed under his or her license. New provisions are added to clarify that a Plumbing Inspector cannot perform inspections of plumbing work that can only be performed by individuals who hold a specific endorsement unless the inspector also holds that endorsement. New language is also added to clarify that a Plumbing Inspector may perform a Customer Service Inspection without a Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement. The provision related to the Residential Utilities Installer Registration is amended to clarify that the scope of work authorized under this registration extends to installations of yard water service piping and building sewers for new residential construction only.

The amendments to §365.2, concerning Exemptions, make non-substantive changes to word choice, grammar, and punctuation to improve clarity.

The amendments to §365.4, concerning Issuance, change the title of the rule to "Issuance of License, Registration or Endorsement" and reword subsections (a) and (b) to improve clarity. New language is added to subsection (b) to specify that a Plumbing Inspector's status will be shown as unaffiliated until written confirmation of the inspector's employment or contract is submitted by an authorized representative of a political subdivision.

The amendments to §365.5, concerning Renewals, change the title of the rule to "Renewal of License, Registration or Endorsement" and reword subsections (a) and (c) - (h) to improve clarity. The deadline for providing notice of the impending expiration of a license, registration or endorsement contained in subsection (a) is changed from thirty days to thirty-one days to conform with statute. Licensed Plumbing Inspectors are added to subsection (d), which is also updated to require successful completion of any required continuing professional education (CPE) course, in person or via correspondence, prior to renewal rather than the submission of proof of the successful completion of CPE. Language describing the instructional content of a medical gas CPE course is deleted from subsection (e) and moved to proposed §365.21, and language requiring completion of a medical gas CPE course in person is added. Subsection (f), which sets forth the circumstances under which a licensee or registrant may complete his or her CPE requirements via correspondence course, is deleted and replaced with an entirely new provision clarifying that a Plumbing Inspector who is unaffiliated, but has fulfilled all other renewal requirements, may renew his or her license but will not receive a pocket card until proof of affiliation is submitted by an authorized representative of a political subdivision. Subsection (g) is updated to conform with current statute, which gives a military service member an additional two years to complete any CPE requirements or other requirements for renewal of a license, registration or endorsement.

The amendments to §365.6, concerning Expirations, change the title of the rule to "Expiration of License, Registration or Endorsement" and add the word "endorsement" to subsection (a). Corrections are made to the description of the late renewal fee contained in subsections (b) and (c) to match the amounts set forth in statute and §361.6(4)(A) of the Board Rules. Subsection (d) is restructured and reworded to clarify what steps are necessary to reinstate a license, registration or endorsement that has been expired more than two years.

The amendments to §365.7, concerning, Duplicate License, change the title of the rule to "Duplicate Pocket Card" to more accurately reflect the procedures of the Board and replace all references to a "license or registration" with "pocket card." The rule is also broken down into subsections to improve clarity.

The amendments to §365.8, concerning Change of Name, Address, or Employment, replace the phrase "license or registration" with "pocket card" to more accurately reflect the procedures of the Board and make non-substantive changes to improve clarity. The provision relating to a change of address is removed from subsection (a) and placed in a new subsection (d) to make it clear that a new pocket card is issued only after a name change and not a change of address.

The amendments to §365.10, concerning Application for License, Registration or Endorsement after Revocation, reword and restructure the existing rule to more accurately reflect the current procedures of the Board. A new subsection (b) is added to explain the application procedure to be used by an individual whose registration was previously revoked. A new subsection (c) is added to explain the application procedure to be used by an individual whose license or endorsement was previously revoked and make it clear that an individual must apply for a Plumber's Apprentice Registration and take all applicable examinations. A new subsection (d) updates the existing explanation of the review and approval process for applications submitted by individuals whose license, endorsement or registration has been revoked.

The amendments to §365.13, concerning Licensing of Guaranteed Student Loan Defaulters and Child Support Defaulters, change the title of the rule to "Licensing or Registration of Individuals in Default on a Guaranteed Student Loan or in Arrears on Child Support Payments." Subsections (a) and (b) are reworded to improve clarity, and the notice requirement regarding default status contained in subsection (c) is changed from thirty to thirty-one days to conform with the change in §365.5(a). Subsection (f) is broken into two parts and rewritten to more accurately reflect the requirements of Chapter 232 of the Texas Family Code.

Proposed §§365.14 - 365.20 largely retain the requirements set forth in the existing §365.14, but restructures it to create a separate rule addressing each aspect of the provision of CPE programs. The term "Provider of Course Materials" is replaced with "Publisher of Course Materials" throughout, and references to the existing §365.14 are changed to conform to the section numbers of the proposed rules.

Proposed §365.14, concerning Course Year for Continuing Professional Education Programs, more clearly states the start and end date for the CPE course year and adds new provisions and a graphic explaining how license expiration dates align with the course year. Subsections (a)(16) and (b)(18) of the existing §365.14 are included as well as new language setting a deadline for the submission of a written request to utilize course materials prior to July 1 for an industry-related program or conference and requiring that such a request include a statement from the publisher that the course materials will be available on the date they will be utilized.

Proposed §365.15, concerning Course Materials for Continuing Professional Education Programs, restructures subsections (a)(1) - (3) and (5) - (9) of the existing §365.14 to improve clarity. New language is added to require that a draft of the course materials submitted for Board approval must contain a separate table of contents and a notice informing students of the provisions contained in proposed §365.20(d) - (f), which set forth standards of conduct for Course Instructors. Subsection (f) is added to allow the Board to post a copy of the table of contents for each set of approved course materials on its website.

Proposed §365.16, concerning Board Approval of Course Providers for Continuing Professional Education Programs and Publishers of Course Materials, consolidates provisions from the existing §365.14 related to the process used to approve Course Providers and Publishers of Course Materials into a single rule to eliminate redundancies. Subsections (a)(12), (14) - (15), and (17) as well as (b)(15) - (17) and (19) from the existing §365.14 are included. New language is added to require the electronic submission of an application for approval as a provider or publisher and to require a publisher to submit an example of correspondence course materials that includes a sample set of 150 questions along with his or her application. New language is also added to require the Board to schedule a special meeting for the purpose of approving applications in the event that the January meeting is cancelled and to require that written notification of the refusal or denial of an application be provided to an applicant within seven business days. Language from the existing subsection (b)(15)(L) is deleted to conform with the deletion of the existing §365.5(f), which limits the categories of students eligible to take a correspondence course.

Proposed §365.17, concerning Board Approval of Course Instructors for Continuing Professional Education Programs, includes subsection (b)(12) of the existing §365.14. New language is added to require a Course Provider to submit the list of Course Instructors it plans to utilize electronically and to include each instructor's contact information. New language is also added to clarify that credentials need only be submitted for instructors that were not utilized by the Course Provider during the previous CPE course year and to require the submission of a copy of the certificate of authorization as an OSHA Construction Trainer for any individual a provider plans to utilize to teach the 10-Hour Outreach Training described in §363.5(f)(2) of the Board Rules. Another new provision requires the submission of documentation confirming that an instructor who was not utilized during the previous course year has completed at least one forty-hour unit of the required 160-hour training program and enrolled in both a training program on the course materials and the Course Instructor Certification Workshop. Finally, new provisions are added to require the Board to schedule a special meeting for the purpose of approving Course Instructors in the event the April meeting is cancelled, and to require the submission of a Course Instructor list at least twenty business days before the date of the Board meeting at which the list will be considered.

Proposed §365.18, concerning Publishers of Course Materials for Continuing Professional Education Programs, includes subsections (a)(4), (9) - (11), (13), and (18) of the existing §365.14. New language is added to require a publisher to have the technology necessary to receive orders via electronic mail; to specify that training in the use of the course materials must be conducted at least once during the period between Board approval of the course materials and the beginning of the CPE course year; and to allow the Board to revoke approval as a publisher for failure to comply with Chapter 1301 of the Texas Occupations Code and Board Rules.

Proposed §365.19, concerning Course Providers of Continuing Professional Education Programs, includes subsections (b)(1) - (8), (10) - (12), (14), (15)(G)(i), (J) and (K), (20), and (21) of the existing §365.14. The new rule prohibits a Course Provider from offering a correspondence course during the first CPE course year the provider is approved by the Board and decreases the amount of time a provider has to notify the Board of a change in the employment status of a Course Instructor from 10 days to 5. New language is added to clarify that time allotted for breaks or lunch may not be counted toward the contact hour requirement for a CPE course. The number of military service members a Course Provider may allow an instructor to admit in excess of the forty-five student limit is capped at four to keep maximum class sizes below fifty students. A new provision prohibiting a Course Provider from allowing a third party to advertise or promote the sale of a good, product or service during the instructional hours of a CPE course is included, and expenditures by a third party that is allowed access to students before or after class or during breaks are limited to $75. Another new provision is added to require a Course Provider that schedules two or more CPE courses on the same date and time to hold each course at a separate location or in separate spaces within the same location. The amount of time a provider has to notify the Board of a class cancellation is decreased from seventy-two to forty-eight hours, and new language is added to specify that a Course Provider must self-monitor each of its Course Instructors at least once per CPE course year. To assist the Board with its monitoring of Course Providers, a provision allowing the Board to post a student survey on its website is added. In addition, a provider that administers its own student surveys will be required to keep a copy of each completed survey for at least two years and provide copies to the Board if requested. Finally, new language is added to specify that a complaint against a Course Provider will be investigated in the same manner as a complaint against a licensee or registrant.

Proposed §365.20, concerning Course Instructors of Continuing Professional Education Programs, includes subsection (c) from the existing §365.14. New language is added to clarify that a Course Instructor must hold a current Journeyman, Master Plumber, or Plumbing Inspector License and teach at least one six-hour CPE course per quarter and may not advertise or promote the sale of goods, products or services in his or her capacity as a Course Instructor. Language allowing the Board to randomly monitor Course Instructors is added to reflect current Board procedures. New language to allow the Board to revoke approval as a Course Instructor for failure to comply with Chapter 1301 of the Texas Occupations Code and Board Rules is also added.

Proposed §365.21, concerning Continuing Professional Education Programs for the Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement, is a completely new rule articulating the Board's policies related to medical gas CPE courses. It sets forth requirements for the minimum length of a medical gas CPE course, specifies when a licensee must take the course, states who may provide or instruct this type of course, and prescribes the formats in which the course may be presented. The rule also describes the form and content of the course materials, sets a ceiling on the fee a student must pay to obtain them, and prohibits a Course Provider or Instructor from offering any incentive intended to persuade a student not to retain the materials.

Proposed §365.22, concerning Licensing Procedures for Military Spouses, replaces the existing §365.15 and §365.16 and combines them into a single rule. Subsection (a) of the existing §365.15 is deleted as redundant because it simply repeats the definition of "military spouse" found in statute and §361.1 of the Board Rules. Subsection (b) of the existing §365.15 is divided into two separate subsections, and the provision related to a military spouse who previously held a Texas license is updated to more accurately reflect Chapter 55 of the Occupations Code and Board procedures. Subsection (c) of the existing §365.15 is deleted as unnecessary. New language is added to require a military spouse to submit proof to the Board that his or her spouse is serving on active duty and to allow the Executive Director to waive any prerequisite for obtaining a license or registration on a case-by-case basis. Subsections (b) and (c) of the existing §365.16 are deleted to eliminate redundancies with statute.

Proposed §365.23, concerning Transfer of License, replaces the existing §365.17. The rule is restructured and reworded to improve clarity. A new provision requiring the submission of a notarized Transfer of License Affidavit signed by the transferor or a valid will executed by the transferor is added to better reflect existing Board procedures.

In addition to the specific changes noted above, non-substantive changes to punctuation, capitalization, and grammar appear throughout the proposed amendments to ensure uniformity across all Board Rules.

The proposed revisions and new rules were identified during the rule review for Chapter 365 published in the November 25, 2016, issue of the Texas Register.

Lisa G. Hill, Executive Director of the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners, has determined that for the first five-year period the amendments and new rules are in effect, there will be no fiscal impact on state or local government as a result of enforcing the amendments as proposed. Because the Board licenses only individuals and not businesses, there should be no significant fiscal impact on small or micro-businesses other than those approved by the Board as Course Providers. However, the size of the impact will vary because the providers do not all utilize the same business model.

Ms. Hill has also determined that for each of the first five years the amendments and new rules as proposed are in effect, the public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing this proposal will be to have rules that are better-organized, clearer, and more consistent. The amendments will also update the rules so they more accurately reflect existing Board policy, thereby protecting the health, safety, and welfare of the public.

Written comments regarding the proposed amendments and new rules to Chapter 365 may be submitted by mail to Lisa G. Hill at P.O. Box 4200, Austin, Texas 78765-4200; or by email to info@tsbpe.texas.gov with the subject line "Chapter 365." All comments must be received within 30 days.

The rules set forth in 22 Tex. Admin. Code Chapter 365 are proposed under the authority of §1301.251 and §1301.253 of the Texas Occupations Code, which require the Board to adopt rules and set fees necessary to administer and enforce Chapter 1301 (the Plumbing License Law); Chapter 53 of the Occupations Code, which requires a licensing authority to issue guidelines relating to the practices of the licensing authority for determining whether a criminal conviction directly relates to an occupation; and Chapter 55 of the Occupations Code, which requires a state agency that issues licenses to adopt rules regarding the licensure of military service member, military veterans, or military spouses.

No other statute, article, or code is affected by these proposed amendments and new rules.

§365.1.License, Endorsement and Registration Categories; [Description;] Scope of Work Permitted.

(a) Pursuant to §1301.002 and [In accordance with] §1301.351[,] of the Plumbing License Law and §361.1 of the Board Rules, the scope of plumbing work an individual may perform is dictated by the type of [a person may not perform plumbing without holding the proper] license, endorsement, [endorsement or] registration or combination thereof held by the individual. [which relates to the type of plumbing to be performed. The scope of work permitted to an individual who holds a license, endorsement or registration issued by the Board is described in paragraphs (1) - (12) of this section.]

(b) [(1)] An individual [Responsible Master Plumber (or "RMP")--A person] who holds a current [is licensed as a] Master Plumber License and meets the requirements of a Responsible Master Plumber (RMP) under §1301.3576 of the Plumbing License Law and §367.3(a) of the Board Rules: [Rules is authorized to:]

(1) [(A)] May advertise or otherwise offer to perform or provide plumbing to the general public;

(2) [(B)] May enter into contracts or agreements to perform plumbing;

(3) [(C)] Shall obtain plumbing permits to perform plumbing work; [and]

(4) [(D)] May perform plumbing work without supervision; and [and supervise plumbing.]

(5) Shall supervise plumbing work performed by other licensees or registrants.

(c) [(2)] An individual who holds a current Journeyman or Master Plumber License may [license--Authorizes the individual to] perform or [and] supervise plumbing work:

(1) [(A)] [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP; [Responsible Master Plumber;] and

(2) [(B)] only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a RMP or a person who has secured the services of a RMP in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules. [Responsible Master Plumber.]

[(3) a Journeyman Plumber license--Authorizes the individual to perform and supervise plumbing:]

[(A) only under the general supervision of a Responsible Master Plumber; and]

[(B) only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a Responsible Master Plumber.]

(d) [(4)] An individual who holds a current Tradesman Plumber-Limited License may: [license--Authorizes the individual to]

(1) perform or [and] supervise plumbing work on [for only] one or two-family [two family] dwellings:

(A) [only] under the supervision of a RMP; [Responsible Master Plumber;] and

(B) only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing secured by a RMP or a person who has secured the services of a RMP in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules; or [Responsible Master Plumber.]

(2) [(C)] [A Tradesman Plumber-Limited license holder may] assist in the installation of plumbing other than for one or two-family [two family] dwellings [only] under the [direct,] on-the-job supervision of a [licensed] Journeyman or Master Plumber.

(e) [(5)] An individual who holds a current Plumbing Inspector License may [license--Authorizes the individual to] perform plumbing inspections as an employee or independent contractor of a political subdivision or state agency for compliance with health and safety laws and ordinances.

(1) An individual who holds a current Plumbing Inspector License with a current Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement may perform inspections of piping that is used solely to transport gases used for medical purposes.

(2) An individual who holds a current Plumbing Inspector License with a current Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement may perform inspections of plumbing work associated with the treatment, use and distribution of rainwater to supply a plumbing fixture, appliance, or irrigation system.

(3) An individual who holds a current Plumbing Inspector License with a current Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist Endorsement may perform inspections of multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler systems installed in a one or two-family dwelling.

(f) [(6)] An individual who holds a current Journeyman or Master Plumber License with a current Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement may [--An endorsement to a Journeyman or Master Plumber license that authorizes the individual to] install piping that is used solely to transport gases used for medical purposes:

(1) [(A)] [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP [Responsible Master Plumber] who holds a current Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement; [Endorsement on his or her Master Plumber license;] and

(2) [(B)] only under contracts or agreements to perform medical gas piping installations secured by a RMP who holds a current Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement or a person who has secured the services of a RMP, in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules, [Responsible Master Plumber] who holds a current Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement. [Endorsement on his or her Master Plumber license.]

(g) [(7)] An individual who holds a current Journeyman or Master Plumber License with a current Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement may: [--An endorsement to a Journeyman or Master Plumber license that authorizes the individual to]

(1) perform Customer Service Inspections pursuant to 30 Tex. Admin. Code §290.46(j). Minimum Acceptable Operating Practices for Public Drinking Water Systems; or [as defined in the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality Rules and Regulations for Public Water Systems. A Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement shall not be used in lieu of a Plumbing Inspector license as required under §1301.351 of the Plumbing License Law to perform plumbing inspections required under §1301.255 and §1301.551 of the Plumbing License Law. The Water Supply Protection Specialist endorsement on a Journeyman or Master Plumber license authorizes the individual to perform,]

(2) install, service or [service, and] repair plumbing associated with the treatment, use and distribution of rainwater to supply a plumbing fixture, appliance, or irrigation system:

(A) [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP [Responsible Master Plumber] who holds a current Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement; [endorsement on his or her Master Plumber license;] and

(B) only under contracts or agreements to perform, install, service, and repair plumbing associated with the use and distribution of rainwater to supply a plumbing fixture, appliance, or irrigation system secured by a RMP who holds a current Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement or a person who has secured the services of a RMP, in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules, [Responsible Master Plumber] who holds a current Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement. [endorsement on his or her Master Plumber license.]

(3) A Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement shall not be used in lieu of a Plumbing Inspector License to perform plumbing inspections required under §1301.255 and §1301.551 of the Plumbing License Law; however, a Plumbing Inspector may perform the inspection described in paragraph (1) of this subsection even if the individual does not hold a Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement.

(h) [(8)] An individual who holds a current Journeyman or Master Plumber License with a current Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist Endorsement may [-An endorsement to a Journeyman or Master Plumber license that authorizes the individual to] install a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system in a [for only] one or two-family dwelling: [two family dwellings:]

(1) [(A)] [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP [Responsible Master Plumber] who holds a current Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist Endorsement; [endorsement on his or her Master Plumber license;] and

(2) [(B)] only under contracts or agreements to perform multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system installations secured by a RMP who holds a current Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist Endorsement or a person who has secured the services of a RMP, in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules, [Responsible Master Plumber] who holds a current Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist Endorsement. [endorsement on his or her Master Plumber license.]

(i) An individual who holds a current Plumber's Apprentice Registration may assist a licensee with the installation of plumbing:

(1) under the direct supervision of a person licensed by the Board;

(2) under the supervision of a RMP; and

(3) only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a RMP or a person who has secured the services of a RMP.

(j) [(9)] In addition to the scope of work described in subsection (i) of this section, an individual who holds a current Plumber's Apprentice Registration and a current Residential Utilities Installer Registration may [Registration--Authorizes the holder of a Plumber's Apprentice registration to] construct and install only yard water service piping and building sewers for the new construction of [only] one or two-family [two family] dwellings:

(1) [(A) ] [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP; [Responsible Master Plumber;] and

(2) [(B)] only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a RMP or a person who has secured the services of a RMP in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules. [Responsible Master Plumber.]

(k) [(10)] In addition to the scope of work described in subsection (d) or (i) of this section, an individual who holds a current Tradesman Plumber-Limited License or Plumber's Apprentice Registration and a current Drain Cleaner Registration may [Registration--Authorizes the holder of a Plumber's Apprentice registration or a Tradesman Plumber-Limited license to] install cleanouts and remove and reset p-traps for the purposes of eliminating obstructions in building drains and sewers:

(1) [(A)] [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP; [Responsible Master Plumber;] and

(2) [(B)] only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a RMP or a person who has secured the services of a RMP in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules. [Responsible Master Plumber.]

(l) [(11)] In addition to the work described in subsection (i) of this section, an individual who holds a current Plumber's Apprentice Registration and a current Drain Cleaner-Restricted Registration may [Registration--Authorizes the holder of a Plumber's Apprentice registration to] clear obstructions in sewer and drain lines [only] through any existing code-approved opening:

(1) [(A)] [only] under the [general] supervision of a RMP; [Responsible Master Plumber;] and

(2) [(B)] only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a RMP or a person who has secured the services of a RMP in accordance with §367.3(a)(2) of the Board Rules. [Responsible Master Plumber.]

[(12) Plumber's Apprentice Registration--Authorizes the individual to assist a person licensed by the Board in the installation of plumbing:]

[(A) only under the direct, on-the-job supervision of a person licensed by the Board;]

[(B) only under the general supervision of a Responsible Master Plumber; and]

[(C) only under contracts or agreements to perform plumbing work secured by a Responsible Master Plumber.]

§365.2.Exemptions.

The following plumbing work may be performed [shall be permitted] without a license but shall be subject to inspection and approval in accordance with all applicable local, city or municipal ordinances:

(1) Plumbing work done by a property owner in the property owner's homestead;

(2) Plumbing work that is not performed in conjunction with new construction, repair or remodeling, and is performed on a property that is:

(A) located in a subdivision or on a tract of land that is not required to be platted under §232.0015 of the[,] Local Government Code; [or]

(B) not connected to a public water system and is located outside a municipality;[, or]

(C) located outside a municipality and connected to a public water system that does not require a license to perform plumbing; or

(D) located inside a municipality that is within a county that has fewer than 50,000 inhabitants and that:

(i) has fewer than 5,000 inhabitants; and

(ii) by municipal ordinance has authorized a person who is not licensed under this the Plumbing License Law to perform plumbing.

(3) Verification of medical gas and vacuum piping integrity and content;

(4) Work done on existing plumbing by a maintenance man or maintenance engineer [engineer, as defined in §361.1 of this title (relating to Definitions),] that is incidental or connected to other maintenance duties, provided that such an individual does not engage in cutting into fuel gas plumbing systems, the installation of gas-fueled [gas fueled] water heaters or plumbing work for the general public;

(5) Plumbing work done by a railroad employee on the premises or equipment of a railroad, provided such an individual does not engage in plumbing work for the general public;

(6) Plumbing work done by a person engaged by a public utility company to:

(A) lay, maintain, or operate its service mains or lines to the point of measurement; and

(B) install, change, adjust, repair, remove or renovate appurtenances, equipment, or appliances;

(7) Appliance installation or appliance service work, other than installation and service work on water heaters, done by bona fide appliance dealers and their employees that do not offer to perform plumbing work to the general public, in connecting appliances to existing openings with a code approved appliance connector without cutting into or altering the existing plumbing system;

(8) Irrigation work done by an individual [working and] licensed by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality under Chapter 1903 of the Texas [1903,] Occupations Code, as an irrigator or installer;

(9) Liquid Petroleum (LP) [LP] Gas service and installation work done by an individual working and licensed by the Texas Railroad Commission under Chapter 113 of the Texas Natural Resources Code as a LP Gas Installer;

(10) Water Treatment Specialists licensed by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality under §341.034 of the Texas Health and Safety Code may engage in residential, commercial or industrial water treatment activities including making connections necessary to complete the installation of a water treatment system;

(11) Water well pump installation and service work performed by an individual licensed by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality under Chapter 1902 of the Texas Occupations Code;

(12) Residential potable water supply or residential sanitary sewer connections performed by an organization certified by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality to perform self-help project assistance on a self-help project, which [Self-Help Project which] complies with §1301.057 of the Plumbing License Law [Occupations Code (Plumbing License Law)]; and

(13) Water treatment installations, exchanges, services, or repairs.

§365.4.Issuance of License, Registration or Endorsement.

(a) Upon verification of an applicant's qualifications, the [The] Board shall promptly issue a license, registration or endorsement; however, [endorsement to a qualified applicants However,] the Board may refuse to issue [withhold] the license, registration or endorsement and require reexamination of any applicant who has not remitted the appropriate licensing fee within ninety (90) [90] days of completion of the examination.

(b) In addition to the applicant, [When an applicant passes the Plumbing Inspector's examination, the licensing fee may be paid by either] a political subdivision may pay the licensing fee for an applicant who has met the qualifications for a Plumbing Inspector License. [or the applicant.]

(1) Upon receipt of payment, the Board will show the individual's license status as current.

(2) The Board will show the licensee as unaffiliated and [applicant will be identified as current by the Board. However, the Board may] delay the issuance of his or her pocket [the license] card until written confirmation [is provided to the Board] of the licensee's current employment or contractual agreement with a political subdivision to perform plumbing inspections within that political subdivision is provided by an authorized representative of the political subdivision.

(c) Licenses, endorsements and registrations issued by the Board shall be valid throughout the state, but shall not be assignable or transferable, except as provided by §1301.406 of the Plumbing License Law [Occupations code] and §365.23 of this chapter. [22 TAC §365.17.]

§365.5.Renewal of License, Registration or Endorsement [Renewals].

(a) The Board shall send a written or electronic notice informing [shall inform] a licensee or registrant of the impending expiration of a license, registration or endorsement [by sending notice by written or electronic means] at least thirty-one (31) [30] days before its expiration date to the licensee's last known mailing address, or email address if the notice is electronic, [address] according to Board records. It is the responsibility of a licensee or registrant to renew, by its expiration date, each license, registration or endorsement held even if the licensee or registrant fails to receive the notice.

(b) A licensee or registrant may renew an unexpired license, registration or endorsement before its expiration date by meeting all renewal requirements and paying the fee required by the Board.

(c) A license, Plumber's Apprentice Registration, Residential Utilities Installer Registration, Drain Cleaner Registration, or Drain Cleaner-Restricted Registration must be renewed annually. A Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement, Water Supply Protection Specialist Endorsement, and Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist Endorsement must be renewed once [The licensee's or registrant's failure to receive the notice of expiration will not alter the licensee's or registrant's responsibility to renew the license or registration each year or endorsement] every three (3) years. [years by its expiration date.]

(d) A person seeking to renew a Plumbing Inspector, [Any Journeyman Plumber,] Master Plumber, Journeyman Plumber or Tradesman Plumber-Limited License, or a [Licensee, ] Drain Cleaner, Drain Cleaner-Restricted or [Registrant, ] Residential Utilities Installer Registration [Installer, or Plumbing Inspector wishing to renew a license or registration] must successfully complete [have proof submitted to the Board of successful completion of] the required continuing professional education (CPE) course in person or via correspondence. [course or courses, subject to the additional requirement in subsection (e) of this section.]

(e) In addition to subsection (d) of this section, a licensee seeking to renew a Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement [Any license holder with a medical gas endorsement] must successfully complete the required [complete Board approved] medical gas CPE course in person. [continuing professional education class within the three-year period of the endorsement. The classroom hours shall consist of instruction of the most current edition of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 99, Health Care Facilities Code and the changes therein. No license holder with a medical gas endorsement may count the same medical gas continuing professional education class twice towards meeting the continuing professional education requirements for renewal of the medical gas endorsement on a plumbing license.]

(f) A Plumbing Inspector's unaffiliated status will not affect renewal if the licensee has satisfied all other renewal requirements under the Board Rules. However, the Board may continue to withhold the licensee's pocket card until proof of affiliation is provided pursuant to §365.4(b)(2) of this chapter. [Any license or endorsement holder who lives in a county having no city with a population in excess of 100,000, or resides out of state, or who submits written proof to the Board from a physician stating the medical reason that the licensee is unable to attend a CPE class, may fulfill the continuing professional education requirements by completing a correspondence course approved by the Board.]

(g) A licensee or registrant who is a military service member is exempt from paying a late renewal fee and entitled to an additional two (2) years, beginning on the date the individual is relieved from active duty, to complete any CPE requirements and any other requirements related to the renewal of the person's license, registration or endorsement if the licensee or registrant: [person who holds a license and is:]

(1) is a member of the United States Armed Forces, [armed forces,] a reserve component of the United States Armed Forces [armed forces,] or the state military forces;

(2) is ordered to active duty by proper authority; and

(3) submits documentation acceptable to the Board, [Board] which demonstrates the person was unable to renew the license, registration or endorsement [license] in a timely manner due to the active duty service. [service is: ]

[(A) exempt from paying a late renewal fee; and]

[(B) entitled to an additional amount of time, equal to the total number of years or parts of years that the person serves on active duty, to complete any continuing education requirements and any other requirements related to the renewal of the person's license.]

(h) A licensee is considered to have [Under §1301.404(f) of the Plumbing License Law, the following individuals may be credited as having] fulfilled the CPE requirement [their continuing professional education (CPE) requirements] for the current CPE course year if the licensee is:[, in order to renew a license issued by the Board:]

(1) approved by the Board as a Course Instructor under §365.17 of this chapter or; [Any CPE Course Instructor who is fully approved under Board Rule §365.14 (relating to Continuing Professional Education Programs); and]

(2) an [any] employee of the Board who:

(A) monitors a current CPE course [class] for compliance with the Plumbing License Law and Board Rules; [these sections;] or

(B) reviews all course materials approved [approved Course Materials] under §365.15 of this chapter [Board Rule §365.14] and completes the current Course Instructor Certification Workshop conducted by the Board.

§365.6.Expiration of License, Registration or Endorsement [Expirations].

(a) A license, [Any license or] registration or endorsement not timely-renewed in accordance with §365.5(c) of this chapter [properly renewed each year or any endorsement not properly renewed every three years by its expiration date will] shall become invalid on the expiration [that] date and remain invalid until all renewal requirements are met.

(b) An individual whose license, registration or endorsement has been expired for ninety (90) [90] days or less may renew the license, registration or endorsement by meeting all renewal requirements and [requirements,] paying the Board the standard [scheduled] renewal fee under §361.6(a)(3) of the Board Rules plus a late [and an additional] fee equal to one-half the amount of the standard renewal [examination or registration] fee for the license, registration or endorsement.

(c) An individual whose license, registration or endorsement has been expired for more than ninety (90) days, [over 90 days] but less than or exactly two (2) years, [years] may renew the license, registration or endorsement by meeting all renewal requirements and paying the Board the standard renewal fee under §361.6(a)(3) of the Board Rules plus an additional late fee equal to the full amount of the standard renewal [a sum equal to all unpaid renewal fees plus the examination or registration ] fee [required] for the license, registration or endorsement.

(d) An [No] individual whose [may renew a] license, registration or endorsement [that] has been expired for more than two (2) [or more] years may not renew and shall instead[; however, in such cases an individual can] apply for a reinstatement of the license, registration or endorsement. An individual seeking a reinstatement shall follow the same application process as an applicant who has never held a license, registration or endorsement, including registering as a Plumber's Apprentice, submitting the necessary application(s), paying the fee(s) required by §361.6 of the Board Rules, and taking any applicable examinations. [new license or endorsement by taking the current examination and paying the current fees. An individual may apply for a new Registration by meeting the requirements and procedures for obtaining an original registration and paying the current fees.]

(e) CPE [Continuing professional education ] requirements must be satisfied prior to the renewal of any expired license, Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement [license] or Drain Cleaner, Drain Cleaner-Restricted [Registrant ] or Residential Utilities Installer Registration [registration].

§365.7.Duplicate Pocket Card. [License.]

(a) The Board shall issue a duplicate pocket card [license or registration] to replace any pocket card that is [license or registration] lost, destroyed, or mutilated.

(b) The licensee or registrant requesting the duplicate pocket care shall submit to the Board:

(1) [upon receipt of] an application for the duplicate stating the reasons for the request; and [,]

(2) [together with] the appropriate fee pursuant to §361.6(4)(C) of the Board Rules.

§365.8.Change of Name, Address, or Employment.

(a) A [Each] licensee or [and] registrant shall notify [inform] the Board in writing of any [changes in] legal name change [or mailing address] not later than thirty (30) days after the change becomes final. [a change in the person's legal name or mailing address.] After receiving [the] notification of a change of name, along [name or mailing address, together] with the appropriate fee, the Board shall update its records and issue a new pocket card [license or registration] reflecting the change.

(b) A [Each] Plumbing Inspector shall notify [inform] the Board in writing of each political subdivision [that] the Plumbing Inspector is employed by, [by] or has contracted with, for the purposes of performing plumbing inspections and any changes in contract or employment status within thirty (30) days of status change. The written confirmation of contract or employment must be provided by an authorized representative of each political subdivision.

(c) A [Each] licensee or registrant shall notify the Board in writing of any change to his or her primary place of employment upon renewal of his or her license or registration.

(d) A licensee or registrant shall notify the Board of a change of mailing address as soon as practicable and no more than thirty (30) days after the change becomes final.

§365.10Application for License, Registration or Endorsement after Revocation.

(a) An [Any] individual whose license, registration or endorsement has been revoked may not apply to the Board for a new license, registration or endorsement until [after a waiting period of] at least one (1) year has passed since [from] the effective date of the revocation.

(b) An individual whose registration has been revoked shall submit a new application along with the required fee. An application for registration as a Residential Utilities Installer, Drain Cleaner or Drain Cleaner-Restricted may be submitted at the same time as an application for registration as a Plumber's Apprentice.

(c) An individual whose license or endorsement has been revoked shall follow the same application process as an applicant who has never held a license or registration, including registering as a Plumber's Apprentice, submitting the required fees, and applying for and taking the applicable examinations. An examination application may be submitted at the same time as an application for registration as a Plumber's Apprentice.

(d) An application for the type of license, registration or endorsement that was revoked shall be reviewed by the[The] Enforcement Committee in addition to any review performed pursuant to Chapter 53 of the Texas Occupations Code and §363.15 of the Board Rules. [shall be delegated the authority of making the initial review of a previously revoked license or registration.]

(1) If the committee denies [decides to deny] the application, [application for a new license or registration,] it shall follow the procedures set forth in §363.15 of the Board Rules. [proceed in the same manner it would if presented any other application it believes should be denied.]

(2) If the committee approves [makes a decision to approve] the application, it shall present the application to the full Board for approval. [applicant's request, it must nonetheless be presented for approval before the Board members, at a regularly scheduled Board meeting to approve the applicant's request, if approved, then the applicant is to follow the same licensing or registration procedures required of a first-time licensee or registrant.]

§365.13Licensing or Registration of Individuals in Default on a Guaranteed Student Loan or in Arrears on [Defaulters and] Child Support Payments. [Support Defaulters.]

(a) The Board shall not [refuse to] renew the license or registration of an individual [a licensee or registrant] whose name is on the list of those who have defaulted on student loans published by the Texas Guaranteed Students Loan Corporation (TGSLC) [(hereinafter TGSLC)] unless:

(1) the renewal is the first renewal following the Board's receipt of a TGSLC list that includes [including] the licensee's or registrant's name; [name among those in default;] or

(2) the licensee or registrant presents to the Board a certificate issued by [the] TGSLC certifying that:

(A) the licensee or registrant has entered into a repayment agreement on the defaulted loan; or

(B) the licensee or registrant is not in default on a loan guaranteed by [the] TGSLC.

(b) The Board shall not [may] issue an initial license or registration to an applicant whose name is [individual] on TGSLC's list of individuals in default [defaulters who meets all other qualifications for licensing but shall not renew the license or registration] unless the applicant [licensee] presents to the Board a certificate issued by [the] TGSLC certifying that:

(1) the licensee or registrant has entered into a repayment agreement on the defaulted loan; or

(2) the licensee or registrant is not in default on a loan guaranteed by [the] TGSLC.

(c) The Board shall not renew the license or registration of an individual [a licensee or registrant] who defaults on a repayment agreement unless the individual presents to the Board a certificate issued by [the] TGSLC certifying that:

(1) the licensee or registrant has entered into another repayment agreement on the defaulted loan; or

(2) the licensee or registrant is not in default on a loan guaranteed by [the] TGSLC or on a repayment agreement.

(d) The Board will provide the licensee or registrant identified by [the] TGSLC as being in default with written notice of his or her default status at least thirty-one (31) [30] days before the expiration date of the license or registration to the last known mailing address according to the Board's records.

(e) An individual informed by the Board of his or her default status according to [the] TGSLC shall be provided an opportunity for a hearing, if requested by the licensee or registrant, in accordance with these rules.

(f) Upon receipt of a request from the Office of the Attorney General issued under §232.0135(a) of the Texas Family Code, [In strict accordance with the provisions of Texas Family Code Chapter 232, pertaining to delinquent child support, if a licensee or registrant's name has been provided by the Office of the Attorney General of Texas as being in default of child support,] the Board shall not renew the license or registration of the individual who is the subject of the request, or approve an application for an initial license or registration submitted by the individual who is the subject of the request until [License or Registration on the renewal date following such notification. The Board shall not renew or reinstate said License or Registration unless] the Office of the Attorney General notifies the Board [certifies ] that the individual has satisfied one of the criteria set forth in §232.0135(b) of the Family Code. [the requirements of Chapter 232 of the Texas Family Code.]

(g) Upon receipt of a final order from the Office of the Attorney General suspending a license or registration for failure to pay child support, the [The] Board shall suspend the license or registration of the individual who is the subject of the order and record the suspension in its records [a License or Registration upon order of the Attorney General of Texas].

(1) A final order issued by the Office of the Attorney General applies to each license, registration or endorsement held by the individual who is the subject of the final order.

(2) The Board may not issue an initial license or registration, or remove the suspension, until the Office of the Attorney General issues an order vacating or staying the final order suspending the license or registration.

§365.14.Course Year for Continuing Professional Education Programs.

(a) The course year for Continuing Professional Education Programs begins on July 1st of each calendar year and ends on June 30th of the next calendar year.

(b) The authority of a Course Provider approved under §365.16 of this chapter to provide CPE courses or a Course Instructor approved under §365.17 of this chapter to teach CPE courses runs concurrently with the course year that starts on July 1st of the calendar year in which the provider or instructor is approved by the Board.

(c) A licensee or registered Drain Cleaner, Drain Cleaner-Restricted or Residential Utilities Installer shall complete at least six (6) hours of CPE before he or she may renew his or her license or registration. Paragraphs 1 and 2 of this subsection and Figure: 22 TAC §365.14(c)(2) explain how license expiration dates align with the CPE course year.

(1) An individual whose license or registration expires before July 1st, will only receive credit for a CPE course that utilizes course materials that were approved for the CPE course year beginning on July 1st of the calendar year prior to the year in which the license or registration will expire.

(2) An individual whose license or registration expires on or after July 1st, will only receive credit for a CPE course that utilizes course materials that were approved for the course year beginning on July 1st of the year in which the license or registration will expire.

Figure: 22 TAC §365.14(c)(2)

(d) The authority of a Publisher of Course Materials approved under §363.15 of this chapter to sell course materials begins on July 1st of the calendar year in which the materials are approved and continues until the course materials are no longer required for the renewal of an expired license or registration.

(1) The Board may authorize the use of course materials prior to July 1st for industry-related programs or conferences if the person offering the program or conference submits:

(A) a written request stating the date, time, and place the materials will be used; and

(B) a statement from the Publisher whose course materials will be used verifying that the materials will be available on the date included in the request.

(2) A request submitted pursuant to paragraph (1) of this subsection, shall be submitted no later than fifteen (15) business days before the regularly-scheduled January or April meeting of the Board.

§365.15.Course Materials for Continuing Professional Education Programs.

(a) The course materials are the printed materials provided to the licensees and registrants attending a CPE course for use in the classroom or in conjunction with a correspondence course and for future reference.

(1) The Board shall publish a list of the approved subjects that course materials may cover and update the list as needed.

(2) The course materials shall not advertise or promote the sale of goods, products or services.

(b) The course materials shall be comprehensive enough to support a minimum of six (6) classroom hours of study.

(1) Three (3) hours shall cover the subjects of health protection, energy conservation and water conservation.

(2) Three (3) hours shall cover subjects from the list of approved subjects published by the Board and include information concerning the Plumbing License Law, Board Rules, and current industry practices and codes.

(3) All of the information covered shall present:

(A) issues relevant to the plumbing trade in the current market;

(B) changes to the plumbing trade; or

(C) topics which increase or support the students' development of skill and competence in the plumbing trade.

(c) A Publisher of Course Materials, Course Provider or Course Instructor shall encourage the student to retain the course materials for future reference and shall not offer to buy back used course materials from a student or offer any other incentive intended to persuade a student not to retain the course materials.

(d) The Board shall annually approve course materials for the CPE course required for the renewal of a Journeyman Plumber, Master Plumber, Tradesman Plumber-Limited or Plumbing Inspector License under §1301.404 of the Plumbing License Law or the renewal of a Drain Cleaner, Drain Cleaner-Restricted or Residential Utilities Installer Registration under §1301.405 of the Plumbing License Law.

(1) A Publisher of Course Materials shall electronically submit a draft version of the course materials, and a separate table of contents, to the Board for approval.

(2) The draft submitted shall:

(A) be free of all typos and grammar, spelling and punctuation errors;

(B) include illustrations and graphics to show concepts not easily explained in words;

(C) include a statement that the most current Board forms used for doing business with licensees, registrants, and the public are available on the Board's website or by mail upon request;

(D) include a notice informing students of the provisions contained in §365.20(d) - (f) of this chapter; and

(E) prominently display in bolded 10-point type, or larger, the following disclaimer: "THIS CONTINUING PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION COURSE MATERIAL HAS BEEN APPROVED BY THE TEXAS STATE BOARD OF PLUMBING EXAMINERS FOR USE IN THE (state year) CPE YEAR. BY ITS APPROVAL OF THIS COURSE MATERIAL, THE TEXAS STATE BOARD OF PLUMBING EXAMINERS DOES NOT ASSUME ANY RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ACCURACY OF THE CONTENTS OF THE COURSE MATERIAL. FURTHER, THE TEXAS STATE BOARD OF PLUMBING EXAMINERS IS NOT MAKING ANY DETERMINATION THAT THE PARTY PUBLISHING THE COURSE MATERIALS HAS COMPLIED WITH ANY APPLICABLE COPYRIGHT AND OTHER LAWS IN PUBLISHING THE COURSEMATERIAL AND THE TEXAS STATE BOARD OF PLUMBING EXAMINERS DOES NOT ASSUME ANY LIABILITY OR RESPONSIBILITY THEREFOR. THE COURSE MATERIAL IS NOT BEING PUBLISHED BY NOR IS IT A PUBLICATION OF THE TEXAS STATE BOARD OF PLUMBING EXAMINERS."

(e) Upon Board approval, final copies of the course materials shall be printed for distribution to students in a bound version meeting the following minimum technical specifications for printing and production:

(1) Binding--Perfect or Metal Coiled;

(2) Ink--Full Bleed Color;

(3) Cover Material--80 Pound Gloss Paper; and

(4) Page Material--70 Pound.

(f) The Board may post a copy of the table of contents of each set of approved course materials on its website.

§365.16.Board Approval of Course Providers for Continuing Professional Education Programs and Publishers of Course Materials.

(a) The Board may approve an individual, business or association as a Course Provider or Publisher of Course Materials.

(1) An individual wishing to become a Course Provider or Publisher of Course Materials shall submit electronically a completed application that includes:

(A) the individual's name, address, telephone number, and email address;

(B) the individual's social security number;

(C) a statement disclosing whether the individual has ever been convicted of a felony;

(D) the price to be charged for:

(i) the course materials; or

(ii) the courses offered by the Course Provider; and

(E) the name, address, telephone number, and email address of the individual designated by the applicant as the person responsible for answering inquiries and receiving notifications from the Board, if different from the applicant.

(2) A business or association wishing to become a Course Provider or Publisher of Course Materials shall submit a completed application, which includes:

(A) the name, address, telephone number, and email address of each officer, director, trustee, or member of the governing board of the applicant;

(B) the business or association's tax identification number;

(C) a statement from each officer, director, trustee, or member of the governing board of the applicant disclosing whether he or she has ever been convicted of a felony;

(D) a current certificate of account status issued to the applicant by the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts;

(E) the price to be charged for:

(i) the course materials; or

(ii) the courses offered by the Course Provider; and

(F) the name, address, telephone number, and email address of the individual designated by the applicant as the person responsible for answering inquiries and receiving notifications from the Board, if different from the applicant.

(3) An individual, business or association wishing to act as a Publisher of Course Materials or Course Provider shall submit an application annually in accordance with this section.

(b) In addition to the information required by subsection (a) of this section, an applicant wishing to become a Publisher of Course Materials shall submit:

(1) an electronic draft of the course materials to be provided that complies with §365.15 of this chapter; and

(2) an example of correspondence course materials, including a sample set of 150 questions.

(c) In addition to the information required by subsection (a) of this section, an applicant wishing to become a Course Provider shall submit electronically:

(1) an example of the Certificate of Completion that will be given to a licensee or registrant who completes a course offered by the provider;

(2) a draft course schedule or plan for establishing a course schedule;

(3) a statement disclosing which publisher's course materials will be used; and

(4) a strategic plan for providing courses equitably across the state, which includes a method for compiling statistical data regarding the number of CPE courses conducted, the number of students instructed and any similar metrics required to be submitted to the Board.

(d) The Board shall review and vote on all timely-submitted applications at its annual January meeting.

(1) In the event that the January meeting is cancelled, the Board will schedule a special meeting as soon as possible for the purpose of voting on applications.

(2) An application to become a Publisher of Course Materials is deemed timely-submitted if it is complete and received no later than November 15th of the calendar year preceding the year in which the January meeting will take place.

(3) An application to become a Course Provider is deemed timely-submitted if it is complete and received no later than December 1st of the calendar year preceding the year in which the January meeting will take place.

(e) The Board may:

(1) refuse to accept an incomplete application; or

(2) deny approval of an application for:

(A) failure to comply with the provisions of this section; or

(B) failure to satisfy the Board that the applicant has the ability to provide quality course materials; or

(C) failure to satisfy the Board that the applicant has the ability to provide quality CPE courses; or

(D) inadequate coverage of the subjects required to be included in the course materials; or

(E) inadequate instruction in the subjects required to be included in course materials.

(f) The Board shall provide an applicant whose application is refused or denied a written notice detailing the deficiencies in the application or the reasons for denial no later than seven (7) business days after the incomplete application was received or the decision to deny was made.

§365.17.Board Approval of Course Instructors for Continuing Professional Education Programs.

(a) A Course Provider shall secure Board approval of each Course Instructor it engages to teach the CPE courses it offers.

(b) On or before March 15th of each year, a Course Provider shall submit electronically:

(1) a list of the Course Instructors it plans to utilize, including each instructor's contact information;

(2) a copy of the credentials of each instructor not utilized by the provider in the preceding CPE course year;

(3) documentation confirming that each instructor has:

(A) completed the training required by §365.20(b) of this chapter;

(B) enrolled in the training described by §365.18(c) of this chapter; and

(C) enrolled in the training required by §365.20(a) of this chapter; and

(4) a copy of the certificate of authorization as an OSHA Construction Trainer for any individual it will utilize to teach the 10-Hour Outreach Training described in §363.5(f)(2) of the Board Rules.

(c) The Board shall review and vote on the lists submitted under subsection (b) of this section at its annual April meeting.

(1) In the event that the April meeting is cancelled, the Board will schedule a special meeting as soon as possible for the purpose of voting on Course Instructors.

(2) The Board may approve additional Course Instructors at any regularly-scheduled meeting provided that the information required by subsection (b) of this section is submitted no later than twenty (20) business days before the date of the meeting.

§365.18.Publishers of Course Materials for Continuing Professional Education Programs.

(a) A Publisher of Course Materials shall:

(1) have legal ownership of, or obtain a license to use, all copyrighted content included within the course materials;

(2) secure access to distribution facilities sufficient to ensure prompt distribution of course materials;

(3) have the technology necessary to receive orders via facsimile or electronic mail;

(4) provide a statewide toll free telephone number for placing orders; and

(5) ship any ordered material within ten (10) business days after the receipt of payment in full.

(b) A Publisher of Course Materials shall provide the materials in a form suitable for a correspondence course, as needed. Course materials provided for a correspondence course shall be made available for at least three (3) years, or as necessary for renewal of an expired license.

(c) A Publisher of Course Materials shall conduct training for approved Course Instructors in the use of course materials. The training shall take place at least once a year during the period between Board approval of the course materials in January and the beginning of the CPE course year on July 1st.

(d) A Publisher of Course Materials shall not sell course materials to a Course Provider or student for a price that is different from the price stated in the application submitted under §365.16(a) of this chapter.

(e) A publisher's failure to comply with this section or any other applicable provision of the Plumbing License Law or Board Rules constitutes grounds for disciplinary action against the publisher, including revocation of approval to publish course materials, or the denial of future applications for approval as a Publisher of Course Materials.

§365.19.Course Providers of Continuing Professional Education Programs.

(a) A Board-approved Course Provider may offer a CPE course required for the renewal of a license, endorsement or registration. A Course Provider may not offer a correspondence course during the CPE course year that begins on July 1st of the calendar year in which the provider is first approved by the Board.

(b) A Course Provider shall only allow Board-approved Course Instructors to teach the CPE courses it offers. A Course Provider shall notify the Board as soon as practicable, and no later than five (5) days, after any change in an instructor's employment status with the Course Provider.

(c) A Course Provider shall present a CPE course in one of the following formats:

(1) a single day consisting of six (6) contact hours in the classroom;

(2) two (2) days that fall within the same seven (7) day period, each consisting of three (3) contact hours in the classroom; or

(3) a Board-approved correspondence format.

(d) A Course Provider shall not count time allotted for breaks or lunch toward the contact hour requirement contained in subsection (c) of this section. A break for lunch shall be at least thirty (30) minutes long.

(e) A Course Provider shall spend a minimum of three (3) contact hours covering the subjects of health protection, energy conservation and water conservation.

(1) All instruction provided shall be based on the course materials described in §365.15 of this chapter and any other materials approved by the Board.

(2) In addition to the course materials, Course Providers may utilize videos, films, slides or other appropriate types of illustrations and graphic materials so long as they relate to a subject covered by the course materials.

(f) A Course Provider shall limit the number of students for any CPE course to forty-five (45). A Course Provider may allow a Course Instructor to admit four (4) additional students, for a maximum of forty-nine (49), regardless of when the students apply for admittance, if the additional students:

(1) are currently on active duty as members of the United States Armed Forces, a reserve component of the United States Armed Forces or the state military forces; and

(2) present valid identification to the Course Instructor confirming the active duty status required by paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(g) In addition to the price to be charged a licensee or registrant enrolled in a course offered by the provider, a Course Provider that is not also a Publisher of Course Materials may impose a fee for the course materials that is less than or equal to the cost it incurs to purchase the materials from a Board-approved publisher.

(h) A Course Provider shall not advertise or promote the sale of any goods, products or services during the instructional portion of a CPE course, or allow a third party to advertise or promote the sale of any goods, products or services during the instructional portion of a CPE course.

(1) If a Provider allows a third party access to its students before or after class, or during a break, the third party shall not expend more than seventy-five dollars ($75) in connection with any food, drink, or promotional item provided to the students.

(2) A Provider may not allow two or more third party vendors to provide food or drink at a single CPE course.

(i) At least seven (7) days before conducting a course, a Course Provider shall give notice to the Board via electronic mail of its intent to conduct the course or post notice of the course schedule on the Course Provider's website.

(1) The notice shall contain the time(s) and place(s) where the course(s) will occur and the name of the Course Instructor scheduled to teach each course.

(2) A Course Provider shall give notice even if attendance at a course is limited to a specific group or organization.

(3) A Course Provider that schedules two (2) or more courses on the same date and time shall hold each course at a separate location or in separate spaces within the same location.

(j) A Course Provider shall establish a system that allows it to receive immediate notification from a Course Instructor in the event the Course Instructor is unable to provide instruction for a scheduled course.

(1) A Course Provider shall provide a substitute Course Instructor in order to avoid cancelling the scheduled course.

(2) If cancellation of the course is unavoidable, the Course Provider shall:

(A) immediately notify each student affected by the cancellation;

(B) reschedule the cancelled course as soon as possible; and

(C) notify the Board of the cancellation within forty-eight (48) hours.

(k) A Course Provider shall furnish a Certificate of Completion of CPE to each licensee and registrant who completes a CPE course it offers.

(1) The Certificate of Completion shall state:

(A) the name of the Course Provider and Course Instructor;

(B) the name and license or registration number of the student;

(C) the course year; and

(D) the date the instruction was completed.

(2) Within forty-eight (48) hours of issuing a Certificate of Completion, a Course Provider shall, at its own expense and in a format approved by the Board, electronically submit certification of each student's completion of CPE requirements.

(A) The Board may provide training to the Course Provider in the submission method selected, including the use of any computer software.

(B) The Board may charge a fee to recover its costs for computer software used to facilitate the submission and training in the use of the software to the Course Provider.

(l) At least once per CPE course year, a Course Provider shall perform self-monitoring of each of its Course Instructors to ensure compliance with the Plumbing License Law, Board Rules, and any reporting requirements adopted by the Board.

(m) A Course Provider shall submit a report detailing its implementation of the strategic plan required by §365.16(c)(4) of this chapter to the Board as follows:

(1) A Course Provider receiving Board approval for the first time shall submit quarterly reports no later than March 15th, June 15th, September 15th and December 15th of the calendar year in which it received approval.

(2) A Course Provider that is re-approved shall submit a report no later than September 15th of the calendar year in which it was re-approved; the report shall cover the implementation for the preceding CPE course year.

(3) The requirements of this subsection and §365.16(c)(4) of this chapter do not apply to a Course Provider that:

(A) is a business that offers CPE courses to its employees only, and not to the general public; or

(B) is an individual who will not employ a Course Instructor other than himself or herself.

(n) The Board shall annually monitor each approved Course Provider to ensure the quality of the instruction provided and the equitable provision of course across the state of Texas.

(1) To assist with this task, the Board may post a survey on its website that allows licensees and registrants who have completed a CPE course to provide feedback about a Course Provider or Instructor.

(2) If a Course Provider administers student surveys, the Board may request a copy of the completed surveys to assist with this task. A Course Provider shall maintain a paper or electronic copy of each completed student survey for at least two (2) years after the survey was administered.

(o) A Course Provider's failure to comply with this section constitutes grounds for disciplinary action against the provider, including revocation of authority to provide CPE courses, or the denial of future applications for approval as a Course Provider. The Board shall investigate a complaint against a Course Provider in the same manner it investigates complaints against licensees and registrants.

§365.20.Course Instructors for Continuing Professional Education Programs.

(a) A Course Instructor shall:

(1) hold a current Journeyman, Master Plumber or Plumbing Inspector License issued by the Board;

(2) successfully complete a Course Instructor Certification Workshop conducted by the Board; and

(3) instruct at least one (1) six-hour CPE course per quarter.

(b) A Course, Instructor shall attend a Board-approved training program consisting of a total of 160 hours.

(1) The program shall be presented in four (4) units as follows:

(A) forty (40) hours covering the basic educational techniques and instructional strategies necessary to plan and conduct effective training programs;

(B) forty (40) hours covering the basic techniques and strategies necessary to analyze, select, develop, and organize instructional material for effective training programs;

(C) forty (40) hours covering the basic principles, techniques, theories, and strategies for establishing and maintaining effective relationships with students, co-workers, and other personnel in the classroom, industry, and community; and

(D) forty (40) hours covering the basic principles, techniques, theories, and strategies for communicating effectively using instructional media.

(2) A Course Instructor shall complete one of the units described in paragraph (1) of this subsection every twelve (12) months such that all four (4) units (160 hours) are completed within a four-year period.

(c) A Course Instructor shall not advertise or promote the sale of goods, products, or services in his or her capacity as a Course Instructor.

(d) A Course Instructor shall comply with the Plumbing License Law and Board Rules, including the standards of conduct set forth in §367.2 of the Board Rules.

(1) In addition, a Course Instructor has a responsibility to his or her students and employer to:

(A) be well-versed in and knowledgeable of the course materials and ensure that classroom presentations are based only on the course materials and other materials approved by the Board;

(B) maintain an orderly and professional classroom environment;

(C) ensure that only students who receive the required number of contact hours of instruction (excluding any time spent on breaks from instruction) receive credit for attending a CPE course;

(D) notify the Course Provider immediately, if the Course Instructor is unable to provide instruction for a CPE course that the instructor was scheduled to instruct, to allow the Course Provider to make every effort to provide a substitute Course Instructor to avoid cancelling the course; and

(E) coordinate with the Course Provider to develop an appropriate method for handling disorderly and disruptive students.

(2) A Course Instructor shall report to the Course Provider and the Board, any non-responsive or disruptive student who attends a CPE course. The Board may deny CPE credit to any such student and require, at the student's expense, successful completion of an additional CPE course to receive credit.

(e) The Board shall randomly monitor Course Instructors for quality of instruction and compliance with the PLL and Board Rules. The Board will charge a fee to recover its costs for conducting the workshop required by subsection (a)(2) of this section.

(f) A Course Instructor's failure to comply with this section constitutes grounds for disciplinary action against the instructor, including revocation of approval to instruct CPE courses, or the denial of future applications for approval as a Course Instructor. The Board shall investigate a complaint against a Course Instructor in the same manner it investigates complaints against licensees and registrants.

(g) At the beginning of each CPE course, the Course Instructor shall announce where the notice informing the students of the contents of subsections (d) - (f) of this section can be found in the course materials.

§365.21.Continuing Professional Education Programs for the Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement.

(a) A licensed Journeyman Plumber, Master Plumber or Plumbing Inspector who also holds a Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement shall complete a minimum of two (2) hours of CPE before he or she may renew his or her endorsement. A licensee must complete the medical gas CPE course in the CPE course year that coincides with the month in which the endorsement is eligible for renewal.

(b) A medical gas CPE course shall be based on the most current edition of the National Fire Protection Association 99 Health Care Facilities Code (NFPA 99), and include comprehensive instruction on any updates to or changes from the previous edition of the code.

(c) The course materials for a medical gas CPE course shall include either a softbound copy of the current edition of the NFPA 99 or a hardbound copy of the NFPA 99 Handbook, a 50-question exercise covering the most-recent changes and updates to the NFPA 99, and a notice informing students of the provisions contained in §365.20(d) - (f) of this chapter.

(1) The course materials shall not advertise or promote the sale of goods, products or services.

(2) A Course Provider or Course Instructor shall not offer to buy back used course materials from a student or offer any other incentive intended to persuade the student not to retain the course materials.

(3) In addition to the fee charged for a medical gas CPE course, a Course Provider may charge students a fee for the course materials that is less than or equal to the cost it incurs to purchase the materials from the NFPA.

(d) Only an individual, business or association approved as a Course Provider in accordance with §365.16 of this chapter may provide a medical gas CPE course. A Course Provider offering a medical gas CPE course is subject to all of the provisions of §365.19 of this chapter except subsections (c) and (e).

(e) A licensed Journeyman Plumber, Master Plumber or Plumbing Inspector may teach a medical gas CPE course if the licensee:

(1) holds a current Medical Gas Piping Installation Endorsement; and

(2) is approved as a Course Instructor in accordance with §365.17 of this chapter.

(f) A Course Provider shall present a medical gas CPE course in a single day consisting of at least two (2) contact hours in the classroom.

§365.22.Licensing Procedures for Military Spouses.

(a) The Board may issue an initial license or registration to an applicant who is a military spouse and holds a current license issued by another state that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements for the license or registration.

(b) The Board may reinstate the license or registration of an applicant who is a military spouse if the license or registration was current at some point during the five (5) years preceding the date the application is submitted.

(c) After reviewing the credentials of an applicant who meets the criteria set forth in subsections (a) or (b) of this section, the Executive Director may waive any prerequisite for obtaining a license or registration. The Executive Director may also waive a prerequisite if the applicant holds a current license issued by another jurisdiction that has a reciprocity agreement with Texas for the license.

(d) In addition to any required application(s), an individual who meets the criteria set forth in subsection (a) or (b) of this section, must submit proof that his or her spouse is currently serving on active duty.

(e) In lieu of the standard method(s) of demonstrating competency for a particular license, and based on the applicant's circumstances, the Board may use alternative methods when reviewing an application submitted by an individual who meets that criteria set forth in subsection (a) or (b) of this section. The alternative method(s) may take into consideration any combination of the following:

(1) education;

(2) continuing education;

(3) examinations (written and/or practical);

(4) letters of good standing;

(5) letters of recommendation;

(6) work experience; or

(7) other relevant information approved by the Executive Director.

(f) Any information requested in connection with an application reviewed using the method described in subsection (e) of this section shall be submitted in a form and manner prescribed by the Board.

(g) The Board shall process an application submitted by an individual who meets the criteria in subsection (a) or (b) of this section and issue the corresponding license or registration as soon as practicable.

§365.23.Transfer of License.

(a) The Board may only transfer an unexpired license that is issued under the Plumbing License Law and has been held continuously for at least fifty (50) consecutive years.

(b) The Board shall transfer a license to a person who:

(1) meets the requirements set forth in §1301.406(a) of the Plumbing License Law; and

(2) submits the following:

(A) an application that complies with §1301.406(b) of the Plumbing License law;

(B) the non-refundable application fee set forth in §361.6(a)(4)(F) of the Board Rules; and

(C) a notarized Transfer of License Affidavit that is signed by the transferor or a valid will executed by the transferor.

(c) A transfer under this section may not take place before the date of the transferor's retirement or death.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on April 13, 2017.

TRD-201701570

Lisa G. Hill

Executive Director

Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners

Earliest possible date of adoption: May 28, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-5239


22 TAC §§365.9, 365.14 - 365.17

The Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners (Board) proposes the repeal of 22 TAC §§365.9 and 365.14 - 365.17. The Board proposes these repeals concurrently with the proposal of eight new rules to replace the existing §365.14, a new rule that combines the existing §365.15 and §365.16, and a renumbered and revised version of §365.17. The repeal of §365.9 is proposed because it unnecessarily duplicates the provisions of §367.11.

The proposed repeals were identified during the rule review for Chapter 365 published in the November 25, 2016, issue of the Texas Register.

Lisa G. Hill, Executive Director of the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners, has determined that for the first five-year period the proposed repeals are in effect, there will be no fiscal impact on state or local government, individuals who must comply with the repeals, or small or micro-businesses.

Ms. Hill has also determined that for each of the first five years the proposed repeals are in effect, the public will benefit from the new, better-organized rules the Board has proposed to replace the repealed versions of §§365.14 - 365.17.

Written comments regarding the proposed repeal of 22 TAC §§365.9 and 365.14 - 365.17 may be submitted by mail to Lisa G. Hill at P.O. Box 4200, Austin, Texas 78765-4200; or by email to info@tsbpe.texas.gov with the subject line "365 Repeals." All comments must be received within 30 days.

The repeals are authorized by Chapter 1301 of the Texas Occupations Code, which requires the Board to adopt and enforce rules necessary to administer and enforce the chapter. No other statute, article, or code is affected by the proposed repeals.

§365.9.Reprimand, Suspension, Revocation.

§365.14.Continuing Professional Education Programs.

§365.15.Alternative Licensing Procedures for Military Spouse.

§365.16.Expedited Licensing Procedure for Military Spouses.

§365.17.Transfer of License.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on April 13, 2017.

TRD-201701569

Lisa G. Hill

Executive Director

Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners

Earliest possible date of adoption: May 28, 2017

For further information, please call: (512) 936-5239