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Proposed Board Rules

Application for Temporary License for Military Spouses who are Licensed or Registered in Another State
Proposed: January 3, 2020
Earliest possible date of adoption: February 2, 2020

The Texas Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors (Board) proposes a new rule, 22 Texas Administrative Code (Tex. Admin. Code), Chapter 133, Subchapter C, 133.29, regarding the Application for Temporary License for Military Spouses who are Licensed or Registered in Another State.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Any comment or request for a public hearing must be submitted no later than 30 days after the publication of this notice to Lance Kinney, Ph.D., P.E., Executive Director, Texas Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, 1917 S. Interstate 35, Austin, Texas 78741, faxed to his attention at (512) 440-0417, or sent by email to rules@pels.texas.gov.

 

EXPLANATION OF AND JUSTIFICATION FOR THE PROPOSED RULES
The proposed rule implements Senate Bill (SB) 1200, 86th Legislature, Regular Session (2019), which amends Texas Occupations Code, Chapter 55, to authorize a military spouse to engage in a business or occupation for which a license is required, without obtaining the applicable license, if the military spouse is currently licensed in good standing by another jurisdiction that has licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the licensing requirements in Texas. SB 1200 also authorizes a licensing agency to issue a license to a military spouse who meets such requirements.

The proposed rule is necessary to establish a process for the Board to identify which jurisdictions have licensing or registration requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements in Texas and to verify that a military spouse is licensed or registered in good standing in one of such jurisdictions. The proposed rule also provides for the issuance of a license or registration to a military spouse who meets these qualifications and successfully passes a criminal history background check. The license or registration issued under this proposed rule would expire annually and may be renewed twice, but expires on the third anniversary of the date the Board provided confirmation to the military spouse.

FISCAL IMPACT ON STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT
Lance Kinney, Ph.D., P.E., Executive Director for the Board, has determined that for each year of the first five years the proposed rule is in effect, there are no estimated additional costs or reductions in costs to state or local government as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed rule.

Dr. Kinney has determined that for each year of the first five years the proposed rule is in effect, there is no estimated increase or loss in revenue to the state or local government as a result of enforcing or administering the proposed rule.

LOCAL EMPLOYMENT IMPACT STATEMENT
Dr. Kinney has determined that for each year of the first five years the proposed rule is in effect, there will be no impact on the local economy, so the agency is not required to prepare a local employment impact statement under Government Code 2001.022.

PUBLIC BENEFITS
Dr. Kinney has determined that for each year of the first five-year period the proposed rule is in effect, the public benefit anticipated as a result of enforcing the proposed rule will be to provide consistency between state law and Board rules regarding licensing requirements; provide clear procedures for military spouses to become authorized to engage in professional engineering or land surveying; and permit military spouses to request a temporary license or registration, renewable for up to three years.

PROBABLE ECONOMIC COSTS TO PERSONS REQUIRED TO COMPLY WITH PROPOSAL
Dr. Kinney has determined that for each year of the first five-year period the proposed rule is in effect, there are no anticipated economic costs to persons who are required to comply with the proposed rule because the confirmation of authority to practice and the license or registration established by the proposed rule can be obtained at no cost to military spouses who qualify under the proposed rule.

FISCAL IMPACT ON SMALL BUSINESSES, MICRO-BUSINESSES, AND RURAL COMMUNITIES
There will be no adverse effect on small businesses, micro-businesses, or rural communities as a result of the proposed rule. Since the agency has determined that the proposed rule will have no adverse economic effect on small businesses, micro-businesses, or rural communities, preparation of an Economic Impact Statement and a Regulatory Flexibility Analysis, as detailed under Texas Government Code 2006.002, is not required.

ONE-FOR-ONE REQUIREMENT FOR RULES WITH A FISCAL IMPACT
This rule proposal is not subject to Texas Government Code 2001.0045 concerning increasing costs to regulated persons because this agency is a Self-Directed Semi-Independent (SDSI) agency and is exempt from that statute, but also because the proposed rule does not impose a cost on regulated persons under Government Code 2001.024, including another state agency, a special district, or a local government.

GOVERNMENT GROWTH IMPACT STATEMENT
Pursuant to Government Code 2001.0221, the agency provides the following Government Growth Impact Statement for the proposed rule. For each year of the first five years the proposed rule will be in effect, the agency has determined the following:
1. The proposed rule does not create or eliminate a government program;
2. Implementation of the proposed rule does not require the creation of new employee positions or the elimination of existing employee positions;
3. Implementation of the proposed rule does not require an increase or decrease in future legislative appropriations to the agency because the agency, which is a self-directed, semi-independent agency, receives no legislative appropriations;
4. The proposed rule does not require an increase or decrease in fees paid to the agency;
5. The proposed rule does create a new regulation, but the new regulation is required by SB 1200. Military spouses who hold a current license in another jurisdiction having licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements for a similar license in Texas would now be authorized to engage in a business or occupation without obtaining the license required for such business or occupation. Such military spouses who also successfully pass a criminal history background check would also be eligible to receive a license or registration for the business or occupation;
6. The proposed rule does not expand, limit, or repeal an existing regulation;
7. The proposed rule may increase the number of individuals subject to the rule's applicability. This is a new rule, so the number of individuals previously subject to the rule's applicability is zero. After the rule is adopted, the number of individuals subject to the rule's applicability will be increased to the number of military spouses who hold current licenses in other jurisdictions having licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the requirements in Texas and who desire to engage in a regulated business or occupation in Texas; and
8. The proposed rule does not positively or adversely affect this state's economy.

TAKINGS IMPACT ASSESSMENT
The Board has determined that no private real property interests are affected by the proposed rule and the proposed rule does not restrict, limit, or impose a burden on an owner's rights to his or her private real property that would otherwise exist in the absence of government action. As a result, the proposed rule does not constitute a taking or require a takings impact assessment under Government Code 2007.043.

PUBLIC COMMENTS
Any comment or request for a public hearing must be submitted no later than 30 days after the publication of this notice to Lance Kinney, Ph.D., P.E., Executive Director, Texas Board of Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors, 1917 S. Interstate 35, Austin, Texas 78741, faxed to his attention at (512) 440-0417, or sent by email to rules@pels.texas.gov.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY
The proposed rule is proposed pursuant to the Texas Engineering Practice Act, Occupations Code 1001.202, which authorizes the Board to adopt and enforce any rule or bylaw necessary for the performance of its duties, the governance of its own proceedings, and the regulation of the practice of engineering and land surveying. The proposed rule is proposed in accordance with Texas Occupations Code 1001.301, which requires a license to practice engineering. The proposed rule is also proposed under Texas Government Code, Chapter 411, Subchapter F, and Texas Occupations Code, Chapters 53 and 1001, which establish the Board's statutory authority to conduct criminal history background checks on an applicant for or a holder of a license, certificate, registration, title, or permit issued by the Board.  No other statutes, articles or codes are affected by the proposed rule.

133.29. Application for Temporary License for Military Spouses who are Licensed or Registered in Another State.
(a) In accordance with 55.0041, Occupations Code, a military spouse who is currently licensed in good standing by a jurisdiction with licensing requirements that are substantially equivalent to the licensing requirements in this state may be issued a temporary license.
(b) To be eligible for the confirmation described in Occupations Code 55.0041(b)(3), the military spouse shall provide the board:
(1) notice on a completed board-approved form, as required by Occupations Code 55.0041(b)(1);
(2) sufficient documentation to verify that the military spouse is currently licensed or registered in another jurisdiction and has no restrictions, pending enforcement actions, or unpaid fees or penalties relating to the license or registration;
(3) proof of the military spouse's residency in this state; and
(4) a copy of the military spouse's identification card.
(c) The board will determine whether the licensing or registration requirements of another jurisdiction are substantially equivalent to the licensing or registration requirements set forth by the board. In determining substantial equivalency, the board will consider factors including education, examinations, experience, and enforcement history.
(d) The board may not charge a fee for the license or registration as set forth in 133.21(d)(2) of this title (relating to Application for Standard License).
(e) Authority to engage in engineering or land surveying.
(1) An individual who receives confirmation from the board, as described in Occupations Code 55.0041(b)(3):
(A) may engage in the practice of engineering or land surveying only for the period during which the individual meets the requirements of Occupations Code 55.0041(d); and
(B) must immediately notify the board if the individual no longer meets the requirements of Occupations Code 55.0041(d).
(2) An individual is not required to undergo a criminal history background check to be eligible for the authority granted under this subsection.
(f) Temporary license.
(1) An individual who receives confirmation from the board, as described in Occupations Code 55.0041(b)(3), is eligible to receive a temporary license to practice engineering or a registration to practice land surveying issued by the Board if the individual:
(A) submits a completed application on a board-approved form; and
(B) undergoes and successfully passes a criminal history background check.
(2) A license or registration issued under this subsection expires annually and may be renewed twice, but expires on the third anniversary of the date the board provided the confirmation described in Occupations Code 55.0041(b)(3) and may not be further renewed.
(g) An individual who engages in the practice of engineering or land surveying under the authority, license, or registration established by this section is subject to the enforcement authority granted under Occupations Code, Chapter 51, and the laws and regulations applicable to the practice of engineering and land surveying.

 


Previously Posted Rules - The comment period has expired for these changes.

Proposed December 15, 2017
Texas Register Issue

Proposed March 10, 2017
Texas Register Issue

Proposed September 16, 2016
Texas Register Issue

Proposed June 17, 2016
Texas Register Issue

Proposed March 4, 2016
Texas Register Issue

Proposed December 18 and 25, 2015
Texas Register Posting 1
Texas Register Posting 2

Proposed August 27, 2015
Texas Register Issue

Proposed September 20, 2013

Proposed June 14, 2013

Proposed March 1, 2013

 

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