Law:Title 8. Regulation Of Environmental And Industrial Trades (Texas)

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Contents

Chapter 1301. Plumbers

Subchapter A. General Provisions

Section  1301.001.  Short Title.

This chapter may be cited as the Plumbing License Law.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.002.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Board" means the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners.

(1-a)  "Executive director" means the executive director of the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners.

(2)  "Drain cleaner" means a person who:

(A)  has completed at least 4,000 hours working under the supervision of a master plumber as a drain cleaner-restricted registrant;

(B)  has fulfilled the requirements of and is registered with the board; and

(C)  installs cleanouts and removes and resets p-traps to eliminate obstructions in building drains and sewers under the supervision of a responsible master plumber.

(3)  "Drain cleaner-restricted registrant" means a person who:

(A)  has worked as a plumber's apprentice under the supervision of a master plumber;

(B)  has fulfilled the requirements of and is registered with the board; and

(C)  clears obstructions in sewer and drain lines through any code-approved existing opening under the supervision of a responsible master plumber.

(4)  "Journeyman plumber" means a person licensed under this chapter who:

(A)  has met the qualifications for registration as a plumber's apprentice or for licensing as a tradesman plumber-limited license holder;

(B)  has completed at least 8,000 hours working under the supervision of a master plumber;

(C)  installs, changes, repairs, services, or renovates plumbing or supervises any of those activities under the supervision of a responsible master plumber;

(D)  has passed the required examination; and

(E)  has fulfilled the other requirements of the board.

 

Text of subdivision as amended by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 1

 

(5)  "Master plumber" means a person licensed under this chapter who:

(A)  is skilled in the planning and superintending of plumbing and in the practical installation, repair, and servicing of plumbing;

(B)  is knowledgeable about the codes, ordinances, or rules governing the activities described by Paragraph (A);

(C)  performs or supervises plumbing work; and

(D)  has passed the required examination and fulfilled the other requirements of the board.

 

Text of subdivision as amended by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 1

 

(5)  "Master plumber" means a person licensed under this chapter who:

(A)  is skilled in the design, planning, and superintending of plumbing and in the practical installation, repair, and servicing of plumbing;

(B)  has worked as a journeyman plumber:

(i)  for at least four years; or

(ii)  for at least one year and has successfully completed a training program approved by the United States Department of Labor Office of Apprenticeship or another nationally recognized apprentice training program accepted by the board;

(C)  performs or supervises plumbing work;

(D)  has passed the required examination; and

(E)  has fulfilled the other requirements of the board.

(5-a)  "Multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler specialist" means a person who holds an endorsement issued under Section 1301.3565.

(6)  "Plumber's apprentice" means a person other than a master plumber, journeyman plumber, or tradesman plumber-limited license holder who, as the person's principal occupation, learns about and assists in the installation of plumbing, has fulfilled the requirements of and is registered by the board, and works under the supervision of a responsible master plumber and the direct supervision of a licensed plumber.

(7)  "Plumbing" means:

(A)  a fixture, appurtenance, appliance, or piping, including a disposal system, used to:

(i)  supply, distribute, circulate, or recirculate water, other liquid, or gas; or

(ii)  eliminate sewage for a personal or domestic purpose;

(B)  a fixture, appurtenance, appliance, or piping used outside a building to connect the building to:

(i)  a supply of water, other liquid, medical gases and vacuum, or other gas on the premises; or

(ii)  the main in the street or alley or at the curb;

(C)  a fixture, appurtenance, appliance, or piping, including a drain or waste pipe, used to carry wastewater or sewage from or within a building to:

(i)  a sewer service lateral at the curb or in the street or alley; or

(ii)  a disposal or septic terminal that holds private or domestic sewage; or

(D)  the installation, repair, service, or maintenance of a fixture, appurtenance, appliance, or piping described by Paragraph (A), (B), or (C).

(8)  "Plumbing inspector" means a person who:

(A)  is employed by a political subdivision or state agency, or contracts as an independent contractor with a political subdivision or state agency, to inspect plumbing in connection with health and safety laws, including ordinances, and plumbing and gas codes;

(B)  has passed the required examination; and

(C)  has fulfilled the other requirements of the board.

(9)  "Residential utilities installer" means a person who:

(A)  has completed at least 2,000 hours working under the supervision of a master plumber as a plumber's apprentice;

(B)  has fulfilled the requirements of and is registered with the board; and

(C)  constructs and installs yard water service piping for one-family or two-family dwellings and building sewers under the supervision of a responsible master plumber.

(9-a) "Responsible master plumber" means a person licensed as a master plumber under this chapter who:

(A)  allows the person's master plumber license to be used by one plumbing company for the purpose of offering and performing plumbing work under the person's master plumber license;

(B)  is authorized to obtain permits for plumbing work;

(C)  assumes responsibility for plumbing work performed under the person's license; and

(D)  has submitted a certificate of insurance as required by Section 1301.3576.

 

Text of subdivision as amended by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 1

 

(10)  "Tradesman plumber-limited license holder" means a person who:

(A)  has completed at least 4,000 hours working under the direct supervision of a journeyman or master plumber as a plumber's apprentice;

(B)  has passed the required examination and fulfilled the other requirements of the board; and

(C)  constructs and installs plumbing for one-family or two-family dwellings under the supervision of a responsible master plumber.

 

Text of subdivision as amended by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 1

 

(10)  "Tradesman plumber-limited license holder" means a person who:

(A)  has completed at least 4,000 hours working under the direct supervision of a journeyman or master plumber as a plumber's apprentice;

(B)  has passed the required examination;

(C)  constructs and installs plumbing for one-family or two-family dwellings;

(D)  has not met or attempted to meet the qualifications for a journeyman plumber license; and

(E)  has fulfilled the other requirements of the board.

(11)  "Water supply protection specialist" means a person who holds an endorsement issued by the board to engage in the inspection, in connection with health and safety laws, including ordinances, of:

(A)  the plumbing of a public water system distribution facility; or

(B)  customer-owned plumbing connected to the water distribution lines of a public water system.

(12)  "Water treatment" means a business conducted under contract that requires ability, experience, and skill in analyzing water to determine how to treat influent and effluent water to change or purify the water or to add or remove minerals, chemicals, or bacteria. The term includes:

(A)  installing and servicing fixed or portable water treatment equipment in a public or private water treatment system; or

(B)  making connections necessary to install a water treatment system.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 1(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.301(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.003.  Application Of Sunset Act.

The Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners is subject to Chapter 325, Government Code (Texas Sunset Act). Unless continued in existence as provided by that chapter, the board is abolished and this chapter expires September 1, 2015.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 2, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 1301.004.  Nonapplicability Of Law Governing Cancellation Of Certain Transactions.

Except as otherwise provided by this section, Chapter 601, Business & Commerce Code, does not apply to a good or service provided by a license holder under this chapter if the transaction involving the good or service is initiated by the consumer.  Chapter 601, Business & Commerce Code, does apply to a transaction that involves a breach of express warranty or a negligent installation in violation of a building code applicable to the good or service sold to the consumer.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 937, Sec. 1, eff. June 19, 2009.



Subchapter B. Exemptions

Section  1301.051.  Plumbing By Property Owner In Homestead.

A property owner is not required to be licensed under this chapter to perform plumbing in the property owner's homestead.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section 1301.052.  Work Inside Counties Or Inside Or Outside Municipalities.

A person is not required to be licensed under this chapter to perform plumbing, other than plumbing performed in conjunction with new construction, repair, or remodeling, on a property that is:

(1)  located in a subdivision or on a tract of land that is not required to be platted under Section 232.0015, Local Government Code;

(2)  not connected to a public water system and is located outside a municipality;

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

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

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

(B)  by municipal ordinance has authorized a person who is not licensed under this chapter to perform plumbing.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 3(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.053.  Work Incidental To Other Professions.

(a) A person is not required to be licensed under this chapter to perform:

(1)  plumbing incidental to and in connection with the business in which the person is employed or engaged if the person:

(A)  is regularly employed as or acting as a maintenance person or maintenance engineer; and

(B)  does not engage in plumbing for the public;

(2)  construction, installation, or maintenance on the premises or equipment of a railroad if the person is an employee of the railroad who does not engage in plumbing for the public;

(3)  plumbing if the person is engaged by a public service 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;

(4)  appliance installation and service work, other than installation and service work on water heaters, that involves connecting appliances to existing openings with a code-approved appliance connector if the person performs the work as an appliance dealer or an employee of an appliance dealer; or

(5)  water treatment installations, exchanges, services, or repairs.

(b)  Work described by this section is subject to inspection and approval as provided by applicable state law or municipal ordinance.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.303(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.054.  Irrigators And Water Well Pump Installers.

A person is not required to be licensed under this chapter to perform plumbing if the person holds a:

(1)  certificate of registration as an irrigator issued under Chapter 1903; or

(2)  license as a water well pump installer issued under Chapter 1902.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.055.  Lp Gas Installers.

A person is not required to be licensed under this chapter to perform LPG system installation if the person performs the LPG system installation as an LP gas installer licensed under Subchapter D, Chapter 113, Natural Resources Code.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.303(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.056.  Lawn Irrigation Systems.

A person licensed by the board is not required to be licensed by another board or agency to install or work on a lawn irrigation system.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.057.  Self-help Project.

(a) A person is not required to be licensed under this chapter to perform plumbing, limited to the provision of a residential potable water supply or residential sanitary sewer connection, for a project that:

(1)  is in a county a part of which is within 50 miles of an international border; and

(2)  is performed by an organization that:

(A)  is certified by the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission to provide self-help project assistance; and

(B)  provides the board with the following information before the 30th day before the date the project begins:

(i)  the exact location of the project;

(ii)  the intended duration of the project; and

(iii)  other information the board requires.

(b)  The board may require under Subsection (a)(2)(B)(iii) that the organization provide a post-construction report signed by a plumbing inspector stating that the plumbing is safe.

(c)  The board may provide training to an organization that provides self-help project assistance under this section.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.058.  Testing Of Medical Gas And Vacuum Piping.

A person is not required to be licensed under this chapter to verify medical gas and vacuum piping integrity and content.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.303(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter C. Texas State Board Of Plumbing Examiners

Section  1301.151.  Texas State Board Of Plumbing Examiners Membership.

(a) The Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners consists of nine members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate as follows:

(1)  one member who has at least 10 years' practical experience and is licensed as a master plumber;

(2)  one member who has at least five years' practical experience and is licensed as a journeyman plumber;

(3)  one member who has at least five years' practical experience and is licensed as a plumbing inspector;

(4)  one member who is a plumbing contractor with at least five years' experience;

(5)  one member who is a licensed engineer;

(6)  two members who are building contractors with at least five years' contracting experience, one of whom is principally engaged in home building and one of whom is principally engaged in commercial building; and

(7)  two members who represent the public.

(b)  Each member of the board must be a United States citizen.

(c)  Appointments to the board shall be made without regard to the race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin of the appointee.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.304(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.152.  Eligibility Of Public Members.

A person is not eligible for appointment as a public member of the board if the person or the person's spouse:

(1)  is licensed by an occupational regulatory agency in the building construction industry;

(2)  is employed by or participates in the management of an agency or business entity related to the building construction industry; or

(3)  has, other than as a consumer, a financial interest in a business entity related to the building construction industry.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.153.  Membership And Employee Restrictions.

(a) In this section, "Texas trade association" means a cooperative and voluntarily joined statewide association of business or professional competitors in this state designed to assist its members and its industry or profession in dealing with mutual business or professional problems and in promoting their common interest.

(b)  A person may not be a member of the board and may not be a board employee employed in a "bona fide executive, administrative, or professional capacity," as that phrase is used for purposes of establishing an exemption to the overtime provisions of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938 (29 U.S.C. Section 201 et seq.), and its subsequent amendments, if:

(1)  the person is an officer, employee, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of building construction; or

(2)  the person's spouse is an officer, manager, or paid consultant of a Texas trade association in the field of building construction.

(c)  A person may not be a member of the board or act as the general counsel to the board or the agency if the person is required to register as a lobbyist under Chapter 305, Government Code, because of the person's activities for compensation on behalf of a profession related to the operation of the agency.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 5, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.154.  Terms.

Board members serve staggered six-year terms.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.155.  Issuance Of Commission.

On presentation of the constitutional oath of office and a certificate of appointment, the secretary of state shall issue a commission to a board member as evidence of the person's authority to act as a board member.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.156.  Grounds For Removal.

(a) It is a ground for removal from the board that a member:

(1)  does not have at the time of taking office the qualifications required by Section 1301.151 or 1301.152;

(2)  does not maintain during service on the board the qualifications required by Section 1301.151 or 1301.152;

(3)  is ineligible for membership under Section 1301.153;

(4)  cannot, because of illness or disability, discharge the member's duties for a substantial part of the member's term; or

(5)  is absent from more than half of the regularly scheduled board meetings that the member is eligible to attend during a calendar year without an excuse approved by a majority vote of the board.

(b)  The validity of an action of the board is not affected by the fact that it is taken when a ground for removal of a board member exists.

(c)  If the executive director has knowledge that a potential ground for removal exists, the executive director shall notify the presiding officer of the board of the potential ground. The presiding officer shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists. If the potential ground for removal involves the presiding officer, the executive director shall notify the next highest ranking officer of the board, who shall then notify the governor and the attorney general that a potential ground for removal exists.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 6, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.157.  Officers.

(a) The governor shall designate a member of the board as the presiding officer of the board to serve in that capacity at the pleasure of the governor.

(b)  The board shall elect a secretary from its membership.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 7, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.158.  Per Diem; Reimbursement.

(a) A board member may not receive a fixed salary for service on the board.

(b)  A board member is entitled to receive a per diem as set by the General Appropriations Act for each day the member engages in the business of the board.

(c)  A board member may not receive reimbursement for travel expenses, including expenses for meals and lodging, other than transportation expenses. A member is entitled to reimbursement for transportation expenses as provided by the General Appropriations Act.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.159.  Training.

(a) A person who is appointed to and qualifies for office as a member of the board may not vote, deliberate, or be counted as a member in attendance at a meeting of the board until the person completes a training program that complies with this section.

(b)  The training program must provide the person with information regarding:

(1)  this chapter;

(2)  the programs operated by the agency;

(3)  the role and functions of the agency;

(4)  the rules of the agency, with an emphasis on the rules that relate to disciplinary and investigatory authority;

(5)  the current budget for the agency;

(6)  the results of the most recent formal audit of the agency;

(7)  the requirements of:

(A)  the open meetings law, Chapter 551, Government Code;

(B)  the public information law, Chapter 552, Government Code;

(C)  the administrative procedure law, Chapter 2001, Government Code; and

(D)  other laws relating to public officials, including conflict-of-interest laws; and

(8)  any applicable ethics policies adopted by the agency or the Texas Ethics Commission.

(c)  A person appointed to the board is entitled to reimbursement, as provided by the General Appropriations Act, for the travel expenses incurred in attending the training program regardless of whether the attendance at the program occurs before or after the person qualifies for office.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 8, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter D. Executive Director And Other Board Personnel

Section  1301.201.  Executive Director And Staff.

(a) The board shall employ an executive director as the executive head of the agency.

(b)  The board may employ personnel as necessary to administer this chapter. The board may determine the compensation and duties of its employees and the terms of their employment.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 10, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.202.  Plumbing Examiner.

(a) The board shall employ one or more plumbing examiners. A plumbing examiner serves at the will of the board.

(b)  A plumbing examiner shall:

(1)  examine the fitness and qualifications of a person applying to the board for a license as a master plumber, journeyman plumber, tradesman plumber-limited license holder, or plumbing inspector; and

(2)  promptly certify the result of the examination to the board.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.305(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.203.  Field Representative; Inspections.

(a) The board may employ a field representative to assist the board in enforcing this chapter and rules adopted under this chapter.  A field representative must:

(1)  hold a license as a plumber under this chapter;

(2)  be knowledgeable of this chapter and municipal ordinances relating to plumbing; and

(3)  be qualified by experience and training in plumbing practice.

(b)  A field representative may:

(1)  conduct on-site license checks to determine compliance with this chapter;

(2)  investigate consumer complaints filed under Section 1301.303;

(3)  assist municipal plumbing inspectors in enforcing this chapter;

(4)  issue citations as provided by Section 1301.502; and

(5)  in the performance of the field representative's other duties under this chapter, check the license, registration, or endorsement of a person regulated by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation in accordance with the memorandum of understanding adopted under Section 1301.259 and report any noncompliance to that agency.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 11, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.204.  Career Ladder Program; Performance Evaluations.

(a) The presiding officer of the board or the presiding officer's designee shall develop an intra-agency career ladder program. The program must require intra-agency posting of each nonentry level position at least 10 days before the date of any public posting.

(b)  The presiding officer of the board or the presiding officer's designee shall develop a system of annual performance evaluations based on measurable job tasks. All merit pay for board employees must be based on the system established under this subsection.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.205.  Equal Employment Opportunity Policy.

(a) The executive director or the executive director's designee shall prepare and maintain a written policy statement that implements a program of equal employment opportunity to ensure that all personnel decisions are made without regard to race, color, disability, sex, religion, age, or national origin.

(b)  The policy statement must include:

(1)  personnel policies, including policies relating to recruitment, evaluation, selection, training, and promotion of personnel, that show the intent of the agency to avoid the unlawful employment practices described by Chapter 21, Labor Code; and

(2)  an analysis of the extent to which the composition of the agency's personnel is in accordance with state and federal law and a description of reasonable methods to achieve compliance with state and federal law.

(c)  The policy statement must:

(1)  be updated annually;

(2)  be reviewed by the state Commission on Human Rights for compliance with Subsection (b)(1); and

(3)  be filed with the governor's office.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 12, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.207.  Standards Of Conduct.

The executive director or the executive director's designee shall provide to members of the board and to agency employees, as often as necessary, information regarding the requirements for office or employment under this chapter, including information regarding a person's responsibilities under applicable laws relating to standards of conduct for state officers or employees.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 12, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.208.  Separation Of Responsibilities.

The board shall develop and implement policies that clearly separate the policy-making responsibilities of the board and the management responsibilities of the executive director and the staff of the agency.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 12, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter E. Board Powers And Duties

Section  1301.251.  General Duties Of Board.

The board shall:

(1)  administer this chapter;

(2)  adopt and enforce rules necessary to administer this chapter; and

(3)  keep a record of each proceeding conducted before and action taken by the board.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.252.  Rules Restricting Advertising Or Competitive Bidding.

(a) The board may not adopt a rule restricting advertising or competitive bidding by a person licensed under this chapter except to prohibit false, misleading, or deceptive practices by the person.

(b)  The board may not include in its rules to prohibit false, misleading, or deceptive practices a rule that:

(1)  restricts the person's use of any medium for advertising;

(2)  restricts the person's personal appearance or use of the person's voice in an advertisement;

(3)  relates to the size or duration of an advertisement by the person; or

(4)  restricts the person's advertisement under a trade name.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.253.  Fees.

The board shall set fees in amounts that are reasonable and necessary to cover the cost of administering this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.254.  Seal.

The board shall have an official seal.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.255.  Adoption Of Plumbing Codes.

(a) The board shall adopt the following plumbing codes, as those codes existed on May 31, 2001:

(1)  the Uniform Plumbing Code, as published by the International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials; and

(2)  the International Plumbing Code, as published by the International Code Council.

(b)  The board by rule may adopt later editions of the plumbing codes listed in Subsection (a).

(c)  Plumbing installed in an area not otherwise subject to regulation under this chapter by a person licensed under this chapter must be installed in accordance with a plumbing code adopted by the board under Subsection (a) or (b).

(d)  In adopting a code for the design, installation, and maintenance of a plumbing system under this section, a municipality or an owner of a public water system may amend any provisions of the code to conform to local concerns that do not substantially vary from board rules or other rules of this state.

(e)  Plumbing installed in compliance with a code adopted under Subsection (a), (b), or (d) must be inspected by a plumbing inspector.  To perform the inspection, the political subdivision may contract with any plumbing inspector or qualified plumbing inspection business, as determined by the political subdivision, that is paid directly by the political subdivision.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.306(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1212, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  1301.256.  Subpoena.

(a) The board may request and, if necessary, compel by subpoena:

(1)  the attendance of a witness for examination under oath; and

(2)  the production for inspection and copying of records, documents, and other evidence relevant to the investigation of an alleged violation of this chapter.

(b)  The board, acting through the attorney general, may bring an action to enforce a subpoena issued under Subsection (a) against a person who fails to comply with the subpoena.

(c)  Venue for an action brought under Subsection (b) is in a district court in:

(1)  Travis County; or

(2)  any county in which the board may hold a hearing.

(d)  The court shall order compliance with the subpoena if the court finds that good cause exists to issue the subpoena.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Text of section as added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.305(b)

For text of section as added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13, see Sec. 1301.258, ante.

Section  1301.258. Advisory Committees.

The board may appoint advisory committees as it considers necessary. An advisory committee shall serve without compensation or reimbursement and is subject to Section 2110.008, Government Code.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.305(b), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Text of section as added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13

For text of section as added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.305(b), see Sec. 1301.258, post.

Section  1301.258.  Board Committees.

(a) The board may create committees to assist the board in exercising its powers and duties.

(b)  The presiding officer of the board shall appoint the members of the committees. Except as provided by Subsection (c), each committee member must be a member of the board.

(c)  The presiding officer may appoint only members of the agency staff to an enforcement committee that reviews complaints and license registration and reviews endorsement applications submitted by applicants who have a criminal conviction history affected by Chapter 53.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.259.  Memorandum Of Understanding.

(a) The board and the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation shall enter into a memorandum of understanding to improve services and coordinate the functions of each agency.

(b)  The memorandum of understanding must:

(1)  require each agency to share:

(A)  information technology to support the regulation and enforcement of occupational licenses; and

(B)  information on regulatory practices for licensed occupations, including policy issues that affect the regulation of licensed occupations, standardization of complaint and enforcement techniques, and model licensing techniques;

(2)  authorize enforcement officers from each agency to check licenses, registrations, or endorsements held by persons practicing occupations regulated by the other agency and report noncompliance to that agency; and

(3)  state the circumstances when a joint investigation between the board and the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation is appropriate.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.260.  Policy On Technological Solutions.

The board shall develop and implement a policy requiring the executive director and agency employees to research and propose appropriate technological solutions to improve the agency's ability to perform its functions. The technological solutions must:

(1)  ensure that the public is able to easily find information about the agency on the Internet;

(2)  ensure that persons who want to use the agency's services are able to:

(A)  interact with the agency through the Internet; and

(B)  access any service that can be provided effectively through the Internet; and

(3)  be cost-effective and developed through the agency's planning processes.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.261.  Negotiated Rulemaking And Alternative Dispute Resolution.

(a) The board shall develop and implement a policy to encourage the use of:

(1)  negotiated rulemaking procedures under Chapter 2008, Government Code, for the adoption of agency rules; and

(2)  appropriate alternative dispute resolution procedures under Chapter 2009, Government Code, to assist in the resolution of internal and external disputes under the agency's jurisdiction.

(b)  The agency's procedures relating to alternative dispute resolution must conform, to the extent possible, to any model guidelines issued by the State Office of Administrative Hearings for the use of alternative dispute resolution by state agencies.

(c)  The board shall designate a trained person to:

(1)  coordinate the implementation of the policy adopted under Subsection (a);

(2)  serve as a resource for any training needed to implement the procedures for negotiated rulemaking or alternative dispute resolution; and

(3)  collect data concerning the effectiveness of those procedures, as implemented by the agency.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.262.  Plumbing Inspector Code Of Conduct.

The board by rule shall establish a code of conduct for licensed plumbing inspectors. The code of conduct shall require a plumbing inspector to enforce this chapter and board rules in a consistent manner across job sites.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 13, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter F. Consumer Interest Information And Complaint Procedures

Section  1301.301.  Consumer Interest Information.

(a) The board shall prepare information of consumer interest describing the regulatory functions of the board and the procedures by which consumer complaints are filed with and resolved by the board.

(b)  The board shall make the information available to the public and appropriate state agencies.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.3015.  Public Participation.

The board shall develop and implement policies that provide the public with a reasonable opportunity to appear before the board and to speak on any issue under the jurisdiction of the agency.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 14, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 1301.302.  Contract Information.

A written proposal, invoice, or contract relating to plumbing services performed by or under the direction of a plumber licensed under this chapter must contain the name and license number of the responsible master plumber and the name, mailing address, and telephone number of the board.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.308(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.303.  Complaints.

(a) The board may investigate an alleged violation of this chapter by a person who:

(1)  is licensed under this chapter; or

(2)  performs plumbing without holding a license under this chapter.

(b)  The board shall maintain a file on each written complaint filed with the board. The file must include:

(1)  the name of the person who filed the complaint;

(2)  the date the complaint is received by the agency;

(3)  the subject matter of the complaint;

(4)  the name of any municipality and the county in which the conduct that is the subject of the complaint occurred;

(5)  the name of each person contacted in relation to the complaint;

(6)  a summary of the results of the review or investigation of the complaint; and

(7)  an explanation of the reason the file was closed, if the agency closed the file without taking action other than to investigate the complaint.

(c)  The agency shall provide to the person filing the complaint and to each person who is a subject of the complaint a copy of the agency's policies and procedures relating to complaint investigation and resolution.

(d)  The board, at least quarterly and until final disposition of the complaint, shall notify the person filing the complaint and each person who is a subject of the complaint of the status of the investigation unless the notice would jeopardize an undercover investigation.

(e)  The board by rule shall assign priorities and prescribe investigative procedures for investigations of complaints based on:

(1)  the severity of the conduct alleged in the complaint; and

(2)  the degree of harm to public health, safety, or property.

(f)  The board shall maintain information about complaints, including source, type, and geographical area, to identify and address regulatory problem areas and focus enforcement in those areas.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 15, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.304.  Investigation Of Complaints.

(a) The enforcement committee or an employee designated by the enforcement committee may investigate an alleged violation of this chapter or a board rule that is reported to the board.

(b)  The enforcement committee shall determine whether a person has committed the violation and shall recommend appropriate sanctions to the board or, if the enforcement committee determines that the complaint is without merit, dismissal of the complaint.

(c)  The board shall conduct joint investigations with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation as circumstances require.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 16, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter G. License, Endorsement, And Registration Requirements

Section  1301.351.  License, Endorsement, Or Registration Required.

(a) A person, other than a responsible master plumber, may not engage in plumbing unless:

(1)  the person holds the proper license, registration, or endorsement required by this chapter; and

(2)  the person's work is supervised and controlled by a person licensed under this chapter.

(a-1)  A person may not act as a responsible master plumber unless the person holds the appropriate license and meets the requirements for a responsible master plumber under this chapter.

(a-2)  A person that advertises or otherwise offers to perform or provide plumbing must secure the services of a responsible master plumber.

(b)  A person may not serve as a plumbing inspector unless the person is licensed under this chapter as a plumbing inspector.

(c)  A license holder who is supervising and controlling under Subsection (a)(2) the work of a person engaged in the business of plumbing in the construction of a new one-family or two-family dwelling in an unincorporated area of the state must have training and management responsibility for, and shall review and inspect, the person's work. The license holder is not required to provide continuous or uninterrupted on-the-job oversight of the person's work.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 17, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.309(b), (c), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 1301.352.  Examination Required.

The board shall issue a license or endorsement as a master plumber, journeyman plumber, plumbing inspector, tradesman plumber-limited license holder, medical gas piping installation endorsement holder, water supply protection specialist, or multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler specialist to a person who demonstrates the fitness, competence, and qualifications to receive the license or endorsement by passing a uniform, reasonable examination.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.310(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.3521.  Examination Fee Refund.

(a) The board shall refund the examination fee paid by an applicant who:

(1)  provides advance notice of the applicant's inability to take the examination; or

(2)  is unable to take the examination because of an emergency.

(b)  The board shall adopt rules that establish the required notification period and the emergency situations that warrant a refund.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 18, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.3522.  Examination Review Course.

(a) The board shall develop a review course in English and Spanish to assist license applicants in preparation for each license examination offered by the board. If the board provides the review course, the board may charge a fee to an applicant who applies to take the review course.

(b)  The board may provide the review course training materials to private course providers for a fee determined by the board.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 18, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.353.  Inspector Conflicts Prohibited.

The board may not issue a plumbing inspector license to a person who has a financial or advisory interest in a plumbing company.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.354.  Plumber's Apprentice.

(a) A person who desires to learn the trade of plumbing must register as a plumber's apprentice before assisting a person licensed under this chapter in the trade of plumbing.

(b)  A person who has worked as a plumber's apprentice for a period established by law or board rule may apply to take an examination for a license as a journeyman plumber or tradesman plumber-limited license holder. Before the applicant may take the examination, the applicant must complete classroom training provided by a board-approved instructor in a board-approved training program in the areas of health and safety, applicable plumbing codes, and water conservation for at least:

(1)  24 hours if the applicant is applying to take a tradesman plumber-limited license holder examination; or

(2)  48 hours if the applicant is applying to take a journeyman plumber examination.

(b-1)  At the applicant's request, the board may credit an applicant under Subsection (b) with a number of hours determined by board rule against the number of hours of work experience required to take an examination if the applicant has received an associate of applied science degree from a plumbing technology program that:

(1)  includes a combination of classroom and on-the-job training; and

(2)  is approved by the board and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

(c)  At the applicant's request, the board may credit an applicant under Subsection (b) with up to 500 hours of the work experience required before taking an examination if the applicant has completed the classroom portion of a training program:

(1)  approved by the United States Department of Labor, Office of Apprenticeship; or

(2)  provided by a person approved by the board and based on course materials approved by the board.

(d)  Notwithstanding the classroom training required by Subsection (b), a plumber's apprentice may apply for and take an examination for a license as a journeyman plumber or tradesman plumber-limited license holder if the apprentice has received an associate of applied science degree from a plumbing technology program that:

(1)  includes a combination of classroom and on-the-job training; and

(2)  is approved by the board and the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

(e)  Notwithstanding Subsection (b), a plumber's apprentice who is enrolled in good standing in a training program approved by the United States Department of Labor, Office of Apprenticeship, may take an examination without completing the classroom training required by Subsection (b)(1) or (2).

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.311(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 181, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.3541.  Apprentice Registration Requirements.

The board by rule may adopt registration requirements for plumber's apprentices, including training and education requirements.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 19, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.355.  Examination Results.

(a) The board shall notify each examinee of the results of an examination not later than the 30th day after the date the examination is administered.

(b)  If requested in writing by a person who fails an examination, the board shall provide to the person an analysis of the person's performance on the examination.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.356.  Endorsement: Medical Gas Piping Installation.

(a) A person may not install pipe used solely to transport gas for medical purposes or a vacuum used for medical purposes unless the person:

(1)  is licensed under this chapter as a master plumber or journeyman plumber; and

(2)  holds an endorsement issued under this section.

(b)  A person is eligible to receive a medical gas piping installation endorsement if the person performs satisfactorily on a separate examination related to the endorsement.

(c)  An endorsement under this section is valid for three years and may be renewed as provided by board rule.

(d)  An endorsement under this section coincides with rules adopted by the Texas Department of Health.

(e)  A plumbing inspector who meets the requirements of the board may hold a medical gas endorsement and inspect medical gas piping installations.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.312(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 1301.3565.  Endorsement:  Multipurpose Residential Fire Protection Sprinkler Specialist.

(a) A person may not engage in the installation of a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system that uses a single piping system to provide potable water for fire protection sprinklers and for domestic plumbing fixtures and appliances unless the person:

(1)  is licensed under this chapter as a master plumber or journeyman plumber; and

(2)  holds an endorsement issued under this section.

(b)  The board shall issue an endorsement as a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler specialist to a person who:

(1)  holds the license described by Subsection (a);

(2)  applies to the board on a form prescribed by the board;

(3)  pays a fee set by the board;

(4)  presents evidence satisfactory to the board of successful completion of a training program approved by the board that provides the training necessary for the proper installation of a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system as required by the applicable codes and standards recognized by the state; and

(5)  passes an examination required by the board.

(c)  An endorsement issued under this section is valid until the third anniversary of the date of issuance and may be renewed on compliance with any requirements prescribed by board rule.

(d)  A person who holds an endorsement under this section may represent to the public that the person is a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler specialist.

(e)  Notwithstanding any other law, a person who holds an endorsement under this section is not required to hold a license or registration issued by another state agency in order to install a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system.

(f)  A plumbing inspector who meets the requirements of the board may inspect a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler installation.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2009; Subsec. (a) eff. June 1, 2010.



Section  1301.357.  Endorsement: Water Supply Protection Specialist.

(a) A person licensed under this chapter may not act as a water supply protection specialist unless the person holds an endorsement issued under this section.

(b)  The board shall issue an endorsement as a water supply protection specialist to a person who:

(1)  is licensed under this chapter as a master plumber or journeyman plumber;

(2)  applies to the board on a form prescribed by the board;

(3)  pays a fee set by the board;

(4)  presents evidence satisfactory to the board of successful completion of a certification program approved by the board for water supply protection specialists; and

(5)  passes an examination required by the board.

(c)  An endorsement issued under this section is valid until the third anniversary of the date of issuance and may be renewed on compliance with any requirements prescribed by board rule.

(d)  A person who holds an endorsement under this section may represent to the public that the person is a water supply protection specialist.

(e)  A person is not required to hold a water supply protection specialist endorsement if the person:

(1)  is employed by:

(A)  a political subdivision; or

(B)  an electric utility as defined by Section 31.002, Utilities Code; and

(2)  acts as a backflow prevention device specialist or water supply protection specialist in the course of the person's employment.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.3575.  Registration Of Certain Persons.

The board shall register a person who complies with this chapter as a drain cleaner, drain cleaner-restricted registrant, residential utilities installer, or plumber's apprentice.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.305(c), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 1301.3576.  Certificate Of Insurance For Responsible Master Plumber.

When a person is issued a master plumber's license, the person must provide the board with a certificate of insurance that meets the requirements of Section 1301.552 before the person works as a responsible master plumber.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.315(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 7, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.358.  Out-of-state Applicants; Provisional License.

(a) The board may waive any prerequisite to obtaining a license for an applicant after reviewing the applicant's credentials and determining that the applicant holds a license issued by another jurisdiction that has licensing requirements substantially equivalent to those of this state.

(b)  The board may issue a provisional license to an applicant currently licensed in another jurisdiction who seeks a license in this state and who:

(1)  has been licensed in good standing as a plumber for at least two years in another jurisdiction, including a foreign country, that has licensing requirements substantially equivalent to the requirements of this chapter;

(2)  has passed a national or other examination recognized by the board relating to the practice of plumbing; and

(3)  is sponsored by a person licensed by the board under this chapter with whom the provisional license holder will practice during the time the person holds a provisional license.

(c)  The board may waive the requirement of Subsection (b)(3) for an applicant if the board determines that compliance with that subdivision would be a hardship to the applicant.

(d)  A provisional license is valid until the date the board approves or denies the provisional license holder's application for a license. The board shall issue a license under this chapter to the provisional license holder if:

(1)  the provisional license holder is eligible to be licensed under Subsection (a); or

(2)  the provisional license holder passes the part of the examination under Section 1301.352 that relates to the applicant's knowledge and understanding of the laws and rules relating to the practice of plumbing in this state and:

(A)  the board verifies that the provisional license holder meets the academic and experience requirements for a license under this chapter; and

(B)  the provisional license holder satisfies any other licensing requirements under this chapter.

(e)  The board must approve or deny a provisional license holder's application for a license not later than the 180th day after the date the provisional license is issued. The board may extend the 180-day period if the results of an examination have not been received by the board before the end of that period.

(f)  The board may establish a fee for provisional licenses in an amount reasonable and necessary to cover the cost of issuing the license.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 20, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.359.  Statewide Validity Of License, Endorsement, Or Registration; Nontransferability.

(a) A license, endorsement, or registration issued under this chapter is valid throughout this state.

(b)  A license, endorsement, or registration issued under this chapter is not assignable or transferable.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.307(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter H. License, Endorsement, And Registration Expiration And Renewal

Section  1301.401.  Annual Renewal Required.

(a) A license or registration under this chapter is valid for one year. On payment of the required fee, a license may be renewed annually.

(b)  The board by rule may adopt a system under which licenses, endorsements, and registrations expire on various dates during the year.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.307(c), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.402.  Notice Of License, Endorsement, Or Registration Expiration.

(a) Not later than the 31st day before the expiration date of a person's license, endorsement, or registration, the board shall send written notice of the impending expiration to the person at the person's last known address according to board records.

(b)  The person shall notify the board not later than the 30th day after the date of receipt of the written notice of any change of name or address.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.307(c), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.403.  Procedure For Renewal.

(a) A person who is otherwise eligible to renew a license, endorsement, or registration may renew an unexpired license, endorsement, or registration by paying the required renewal fee to the agency before the expiration date of the license, endorsement, or registration. A person whose license, endorsement, or registration has expired may not engage in activities that require a license, endorsement, or registration until the license, endorsement, or registration has been renewed.

(b)  A person whose license or endorsement has been expired for 90 days or less may renew the license or endorsement by paying to the agency a renewal fee that is equal to 1-1/2 times the normally required renewal fee. A person whose registration has been expired for 90 days or less may renew the registration by paying to the board a renewal fee that is equal to 1-1/2 times the normally required renewal fee.

(c)  A person whose license or endorsement has been expired for more than 90 days but less than two years may renew the license or endorsement by paying to the agency a renewal fee that is equal to two times the normally required renewal fee. A person whose registration has been expired for more than 90 days but less than two years may renew the registration by paying to the board a renewal fee that is equal to two times the normally required renewal fee.

(d)  A person whose license, endorsement, or registration has been expired for two years or more may not renew the license, endorsement, or registration. The person may obtain a new license, endorsement, or registration by complying with the requirements and procedures, including the examination requirements, for obtaining an original license, endorsement, or registration.

(e)  A person who held a license, endorsement, or registration in this state, moved to another state, and is currently holding a license, endorsement, or registration and has been in practice in the other state for the two years preceding the date of application may obtain a new license, endorsement, or registration without reexamination. The person must pay to the agency a fee that is equal to two times the normally required renewal fee for the license, endorsement, or registration.

(f)  Not later than the 30th day before the date a person's license, endorsement, or registration is scheduled to expire, the agency shall send written notice of the impending expiration to the person at the person's last known address according to the records of the agency.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 21(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.404.  Mandatory Continuing Professional Education.

(a) The board shall recognize, approve, and administer continuing education programs for persons who hold licenses or endorsements under this chapter.

(b)  A person who holds a license or endorsement under this chapter must complete at least six hours of continuing professional education each year the person holds the license or endorsement to renew the person's license or endorsement. Three of the six hours must be in the subjects of health protection, energy conservation, and water conservation.

(c)  The board by rule shall adopt the criteria for the continuing professional education.

(d)  A person may receive credit for participating in a continuing professional education program or course only if the program or course is provided:

(1)  by an individual, business, or association approved by the board; and

(2)  according to criteria adopted by the board.

(e)  A person may complete the continuing professional education requirement of this section through a correspondence course as approved by the board.

(f)  The board by rule may exempt certain persons from the requirements of this section if the board determines that the exemption is in the public interest.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.305(d), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 1301.405.  Mandatory Training For Drain Cleaner, Drain Cleaner-restricted Registrant, And Residential Utilities Installer.

(a) To renew the certificate of registration, a person who holds a certificate of registration under this chapter as a drain cleaner, drain cleaner-restricted registrant, or residential utilities installer must annually complete at least six hours of approved training that includes training in health and safety requirements, board-approved plumbing codes, and water conservation.

(b)  A person may receive credit for participating in a training program only if the program is provided:

(1)  by a person approved by the board; and

(2)  according to criteria adopted by the board.

(c)  The board by rule may exempt certain persons from the requirements of this section if the board determines that the exemption is in the public interest.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2009.



Subchapter I. Disciplinary Procedures

Section  1301.451.  Disciplinary Powers Of Board.

(a) The board shall revoke, suspend, deny, or refuse to renew a license, endorsement, or registration or shall reprimand a holder of a license, endorsement, or registration for a violation of this chapter, an order issued by the board, or a rule of the board.

(b)  A person whose license, endorsement, or registration has been revoked may not apply for a new license, endorsement, or registration before the first anniversary of the date of revocation.

(c)  The board may place on probation a person whose license, endorsement, or registration is suspended. If a license, endorsement, or registration suspension is probated, the board may require the person:

(1)  to report regularly to the agency on matters that are the basis of the probation;

(2)  to limit practice to the areas prescribed by the board; or

(3)  to continue or review professional education until the person attains a degree of skill satisfactory to the board in those areas that are the basis of the probation.

(d)  The board by rule shall:

(1)  adopt written guidelines to ensure that probation is administered consistently; and

(2)  develop a system to track compliance with the probation requirements.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 22(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 8, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.452.  Grounds For Disciplinary Action.

(a) A person is subject to disciplinary action under Section 1301.451 if the person violates this chapter, an order issued by the board, or a board rule.  A violation of this chapter includes:

(1)  obtaining a license, endorsement, or registration through error or fraud;

(2)  wilfully, negligently, or arbitrarily violating a municipal rule or ordinance that regulates sanitation, drainage, or plumbing;

(3)  making a misrepresentation of services provided or to be provided;

(4)  making a false promise with the intent to induce a person to contract for a service; or

(5)  employing a person who does not hold a license or endorsement or who is not registered to engage in an activity for which a license, endorsement, or registration is required under this chapter.

(b)  Retesting procedures may be used to determine whether grounds exist for suspension or revocation of a license, endorsement, or registration due to incompetence or a wilful violation by a person licensed under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.313(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 9, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.4521.  Consequences Of Criminal Conviction.

(a) The board shall adopt rules in compliance with the guidelines authorized by Chapter 53 relating to criminal convictions.

(b)  The board shall adopt a method to review the agency's compliance with Chapter 53 and the rules adopted under this section.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.4522.  Review Of Application. (a)

The enforcement committee may approve, without board approval, the application for a license, endorsement, or registration of a person who has a criminal conviction if the enforcement committee finds that the criminal conviction does not directly relate to the duties and responsibilities of the business of plumbing in accordance with the rules adopted by the board under Section 1301.4521.

(b)  If the enforcement committee determines that a person is ineligible for a license, endorsement, or registration based on the person's criminal conviction, the person may request a hearing before an administrative law judge of the State Office of Administrative Hearings to review the enforcement committee's determination.

(c)  After receipt of the administrative law judge's proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law, the board shall determine the applicant's eligibility. The board shall provide an applicant who is denied a license a written statement containing the reasons for the board's action.

(d)  An applicant who has a criminal conviction may appear before the board or the enforcement committee to present information relating to the applicant's criminal conviction.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 23, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.453.  Hearing.

A person is entitled to a hearing before the board if the board proposes to:

(1)  deny the person's application for a license, endorsement, or registration; or

(2)  suspend or revoke the person's license, endorsement, or registration.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.313(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.454.  Administrative Procedure.

A proceeding under this subchapter is a contested case for purposes of Chapter 2001, Government Code.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Subchapter J. Other Penalties And Enforcement Provisions

Section  1301.501.  Backflow Prevention.

(a) A person may not sell, donate, or transfer a water closet plumbing fixture or other equipment that uses water if the fixture or equipment:

(1)  does not comply with a state-approved plumbing code; and

(2)  may permit the backflow of a nonpotable substance into a potable water supply.

(b)  The board shall adopt rules under this section that include a list describing the types of plumbing to which this section applies.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.502.  Citation. (a)

A field representative, water district plumbing inspector, or, within the jurisdiction of the municipality, municipal plumbing inspector may issue a citation to a person who engages in conduct described by Section 1301.508.

(b)  The board shall adopt guidelines relating to the circumstances when a field representative may issue a citation. The guidelines must encourage the use of other enforcement measures, including imposition of administrative penalties, before the issuance of a citation.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 24, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.503.  Enforcement By Plumbing Inspector.

Each plumbing inspector shall enforce this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.314(a), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.504.  Injunction.

(a) In addition to any other action authorized by law, the board may bring an action in the board's name to enjoin a person from violating this chapter or a board rule.

(b)  To sustain an action under this section, the board is not required to allege or prove that:

(1)  an adequate remedy at law does not exist; or

(2)  substantial or irreparable damage would result from the continued violation.

(c)  Any party to an action under this section may appeal.

(d)  Venue for an action brought under this section is in a district court in Travis County.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 10, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.5045.  Cease And Desist Order.

(a) The executive director may issue a cease and desist order as necessary to enforce this chapter if the executive director determines that the action is necessary to prevent a violation of this chapter and to protect public health and safety.

(b)  A violation of an order under this section constitutes grounds for imposing an administrative penalty under Subchapter N.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 25, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 11, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.505.  Representation By Attorney General.

The attorney general shall represent the board in an action to enforce this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.506.  Appeal Bond Not Required.

The board is not required to post an appeal bond in an action arising under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.507.  Civil Penalty.

A person who violates this chapter or a rule, permit, or order of the board is subject to a civil penalty of not less than $50 or more than $1,000 for each act of violation and for each day of violation after notice is provided to the person.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1301.5071.  Informal Settlement Conference; Restitution.

(a) The board by rule shall establish procedures under which an informal settlement conference is conducted to resolve a complaint against a person licensed under this chapter.

(b)  Subject to Subsection (c), the board may order a person licensed under this chapter to pay restitution to a person as provided in an agreement resulting from an informal settlement conference instead of or in addition to assessing an administrative penalty under Subchapter N.

(c)  The amount of restitution ordered as provided by an agreement resulting from an informal settlement conference may not exceed the amount the person paid to the license holder for a service regulated by this chapter. The board may not require payment of other damages or estimate harm in a restitution order.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 25, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.508.  Criminal Penalty.

(a) A person commits an offense if the person:

(1)  violates this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter;

(2)  does not hold a license or endorsement or is not registered under this chapter and engages in an activity for which a license, endorsement, or registration is required; or

(3)  employs a person who does not hold a license or endorsement or who is not registered to engage in an activity for which a license, endorsement, or registration is required under this chapter.

(b)  An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.313(b), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter K. Regulation By Certain Political Subdivisions

Section  1301.551.  Municipal Plumbing Ordinances And Permits.

(a) A municipality with more than 5,000 inhabitants shall regulate by ordinance or bylaw the material, construction, alteration, and inspection of any pipe, faucet, tank, valve, water heater, or other fixture by or through which a supply of water, gas, or sewage is used or carried.

(b)  Any other municipality may regulate by ordinance or bylaw the matters described by Subsection (a).

(c)  A municipality that adopts an ordinance or bylaw under this section shall provide by ordinance or bylaw that a person must obtain a permit before the person performs plumbing, other than the repairing of leaks. The municipality may prescribe the terms on which the permit is issued.

(d)  A plumbing inspection in a municipality that adopts an ordinance or bylaw under this section must be performed by a plumbing inspector.

 

Text of subsection as added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 12

 

(e)  Notwithstanding any other provision of state law, after January 1, 2009, a municipality may not enact an ordinance, bylaw, order, building code, or rule requiring the installation of a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system or any other fire sprinkler protection system in a new or existing one- or two-family dwelling.  A municipality may adopt an ordinance, bylaw, order, or rule allowing a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler specialist or other contractor to offer, for a fee, the installation of a fire sprinkler protection system in a new one- or two-family dwelling.

 

Text of subsection as added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 7

 

(e)  A municipality or other political subdivision in this state that requires a plumbing contractor to obtain a permit before the person performs plumbing shall by telephone, fax, or e-mail:

(1)  accept permit applications;

(2)  collect required fees; and

(3)  issue the required permits.

 

Text of subsection as added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 12

 

(f)  A multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler specialist may install a multipurpose residential fire protection sprinkler system in a new or existing one- or two-family dwelling in a municipality described by Subsection (a) or (b).

 

Text of subsection as added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 7

 

(f)  If drawings of proposed plumbing work are required by the municipality or other political subdivision, the municipality or political subdivision shall specify how permit drawings are to be submitted.

(g)  A person who is required to obtain a permit under this section is not required to pay a plumbing registration fee or administrative fee in a municipality or any other political subdivision.

(h)  A plumbing contractor must register, electronically or in person, with a municipality or other political subdivision that requires registration before performing plumbing regulated by the municipality or other political subdivision.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.315(b), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 12, eff. September 1, 2009.

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 7, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 1301.552.  Certificate Of Insurance For Plumbing Permit In Political Subdivision.

A political subdivision that requires a plumbing contractor to obtain a permit before performing plumbing in the political subdivision shall verify through the board's Internet website, or by contacting the board by telephone, that the plumbing contractor has on file with the board a certificate of insurance.  The certificate of insurance must:

(1)  be written by a company licensed to do business in this state;

(2)  provide for commercial general liability insurance for the master plumber for a claim for property damage or bodily injury, regardless of whether the claim arises from negligence or on a contract; and

(3)  provide coverage of not less than $300,000 for all claims arising in a one-year period.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 8, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section 1301.553.  Plumbing Inspections In Municipality That Overlaps Another Political Subdivision.

If the boundaries of a municipality and another political subdivision overlap, only the affected municipality may perform a plumbing inspection and collect a permit fee.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.315(c), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 1380, Sec. 8, eff. September 1, 2009.



Subchapter M. Interagency Cooperation And Regulation

Section  1301.651.  Definition.

In this subchapter, "local workforce development board" means a board created under Subchapter F, Chapter 2308, Government Code.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.652.  Public Education Effort.

(a) The board and the Texas Workforce Commission shall, through the local workforce development boards, coordinate efforts to educate the public about the plumbing profession and the resources available to employers for the recruitment and training of plumbers, including providing:

(1)  each local workforce development board with:

(A)  information about the licensing requirements for the plumbing profession; and

(B)  available statistical data regarding plumbing; and

(2)  a link to each agency's Internet site and to the Internet sites of other local workforce development boards.

(b)  The board may, during public and industry awareness seminars, raise awareness of the career ladder in the plumbing industry and the opportunities that plumbing apprenticeships offer.

(c)  This section applies to the extent that the plumbing profession is designated as an occupation in demand by a local workforce development board.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter N. Administrative Penalty

Section  1301.701.  Imposition Of Penalty.

The board may impose an administrative penalty on a person who violates this chapter or a rule or order adopted under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.702.  Amount Of Penalty.

(a) The amount of an administrative penalty may not exceed $5,000 for each violation. Each day a violation continues or occurs is a separate violation for purposes of imposing a penalty.

(b)  The amount of the penalty shall be based on:

(1)  the seriousness of the violation, including:

(A)  the nature, circumstance, extent, and gravity of any prohibited act; and

(B)  the hazard or potential hazard created to the health, safety, or economic welfare of the public;

(2)  the economic harm to property or the environment caused by the violation;

(3)  the history of previous violations;

(4)  the amount necessary to deter a future violation;

(5)  efforts made to correct the violation; and

(6)  any other matter that justice may require.

(c)  The board by rule or through procedures adopted by the board and published in the Texas Register shall develop a standardized penalty schedule based on the criteria listed in Subsection (b).

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.703.  Report And Notice Of Violation And Penalty.

(a) If the enforcement committee determines that a violation occurred, the enforcement committee may issue to the board a report stating:

(1)  the facts on which the determination is based; and

(2)  the committee's recommendation on the imposition of the penalty, including a recommendation on the amount of the penalty.

(b)  Not later than the 14th day after the date the report is issued, the enforcement committee shall give written notice of the report to the person.

(c)  The notice must:

(1)  include a brief summary of the alleged violation;

(2)  state the amount of the recommended penalty; and

(3)  inform the person of the person's right to a hearing on the occurrence of the violation, the amount of the penalty, or both.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.704.  Penalty To Be Paid Or Hearing Requested.

(a) Not later than the 20th day after the date the person receives the notice, the person in writing may:

(1)  accept the determination and recommended penalty of the enforcement committee; or

(2)  make a request for a hearing on the occurrence of the violation, the amount of the penalty, or both.

(b)  If the person accepts the determination and recommended penalty of the enforcement committee, the board by order shall approve the determination and impose the recommended penalty.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.705.  Hearing.

(a) If the person requests a hearing or fails to respond in a timely manner to the notice, the enforcement committee shall set a hearing and give written notice of the hearing to the person. An administrative law judge of the State Office of Administrative Hearings shall hold the hearing.

(b)  The administrative law judge shall make findings of fact and conclusions of law and promptly issue to the board a proposal for a decision about the occurrence of the violation and the amount of a proposed penalty.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.706.  Decision By Board.

(a) Based on the findings of fact, conclusions of law, and proposal for a decision, the board by order may:

(1)  find that a violation occurred and impose a penalty; or

(2)  find that a violation did not occur.

(b)  The notice of the board's order given to the person must include a statement of the right of the person to judicial review of the order.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section 1301.707.  Options Following Decision:  Pay Or Appeal.

(a) Not later than the 30th day after the date the board's order becomes final, the person shall:

(1)  pay the penalty; or

(2)  file a petition for judicial review contesting the occurrence of the violation, the amount of the penalty, or both.

(b)  Failure by the person to pay the penalty is grounds for the board to refuse to renew the person's license or registration and to refuse to issue a new license or registration to the person.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 804, Sec. 13, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1301.708.  Stay Of Enforcement Of Penalty.

(a) Within the 30-day period prescribed by Section 1301.707, a person who files a petition for judicial review may:

(1)  stay enforcement of the penalty by:

(A)  paying the penalty to the court for placement in an escrow account; or

(B)  giving the court a supersedeas bond approved by the court that:

(i)  is for the amount of the penalty; and

(ii)  is effective until all judicial review of the board's order is final; or

(2)  request the court to stay enforcement of the penalty by:

(A)  filing with the court a sworn affidavit of the person stating that the person is financially unable to pay the penalty and is financially unable to give the supersedeas bond; and

(B)  sending a copy of the affidavit to the enforcement committee by certified mail.

(b)  If the enforcement committee receives a copy of an affidavit under Subsection (a)(2), the executive director may file with the court, not later than the fifth day after the date the copy is received, a contest to the affidavit.

(c)  The court shall hold a hearing on the facts alleged in the affidavit as soon as practicable and shall stay the enforcement of the penalty on finding that the alleged facts are true. The person who files an affidavit has the burden of proving that the person is financially unable to pay the penalty and to give a supersedeas bond.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.709.  Decision By Court.

(a) If the court sustains the finding that a violation occurred, the court may uphold or reduce the amount of the penalty and order the person to pay the full or reduced amount of the penalty.

(b)  If the court does not sustain the finding that a violation occurred, the court shall order that a penalty is not owed.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.710.  Remittance Of Penalty And Interest.

(a) If the person paid the penalty and if the amount of the penalty is reduced or the penalty is not upheld by the court, the court shall order, when the court's judgment becomes final, that the appropriate amount plus accrued interest be remitted to the person.

(b)  The interest accrues at the rate charged on loans to depository institutions by the New York Federal Reserve Bank.

(c)  The interest shall be paid for the period beginning on the date the penalty is paid and ending on the date the penalty is remitted.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.711.  Release Of Bond.

(a) If the person gave a supersedeas bond and the penalty is not upheld by the court, the court shall order, when the court's judgment becomes final, the release of the bond.

(b)  If the person gave a supersedeas bond and the amount of the penalty is reduced, the court shall order the release of the bond after the person pays the reduced amount.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.712.  Collection Of Penalty.

(a) If the person does not pay the penalty and the enforcement of the penalty is not stayed, the penalty may be collected.

(b)  The attorney general may sue to collect the penalty.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1301.713.  Administrative Procedure.

A proceeding to impose the penalty is considered to be a contested case under Chapter 2001, Government Code.

Added by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 819, Sec. 26, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Chapter 1302. Air Conditioning And Refrigeration Contractors

Subchapter A. General Provisions

Section  1302.001.  Short Title.

This chapter may be cited as the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor License Law.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.002.  Definitions.

In this chapter:

(1)  "Advisory board" means the air conditioning and refrigeration contractors advisory board.

(2)  "Air conditioning and refrigeration contracting" means performing or offering to perform the design, installation, construction, repair, maintenance, service, or modification of equipment or a product in an environmental air conditioning system, a commercial refrigeration system, or a process cooling or heating system.

(3)  "Air conditioning and refrigeration contracting company" means a person who or business entity that engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for the public.

(4)  "Air conditioning and refrigeration contractor" means a person who engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting.

(5)  "Air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work" means all work, including repair work, required for the continued normal performance of an environmental air conditioning system, a process cooling or heating system, a commercial refrigeration system, or commercial refrigeration equipment. The term does not include:

(A)  the total replacement of a system; or

(B)  the installation or repair of a boiler or pressure vessel that must be installed in accordance with rules adopted by the commission under Chapter 755, Health and Safety Code.

(5-a)  "Air conditioning and refrigeration technician" means a person who assists a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor in performing air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work.

(5-b)  "Certified technician" means a registered technician who has completed a certification examination.

(6)  "Commercial refrigeration" means the use of mechanical or absorption equipment to control temperature or humidity to satisfy the intended use of a specific space.

(7)  "Commission" means the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation.

(8)  Repealed by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.012(1) and Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.318(b).

(9)  "Cooling capacity" means the nominal tonnage of compression equipment based on 40 degrees Fahrenheit suction temperature and 105 degrees Fahrenheit condensing temperature.

(10)  "Department" means the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.

(11)  "Environmental air conditioning" means treating air to control temperature, humidity, cleanliness, ventilation, and circulation to meet human comfort requirements.

(11-a)  "Executive director" means the executive director of the department.

(12)  "Mechanical integrity" means the condition of a product, a system, or equipment installed in accordance with its intended purpose and according to:

(A)  standards at least as strict as the standards provided by:

(i)  the Uniform Mechanical Code; and

(ii)  the International Mechanical Code;

(B)  all other applicable codes; and

(C)  the manufacturer's specifications.

(13)  "MVAC-like appliance" has the meaning assigned that term by 40 C.F.R. Section 82.152.

(14)  "Person" means an individual.

(15)  "Process cooling or heating" includes controlling temperature, humidity, or cleanliness solely for production requirements or the proper operation of equipment.

(16)  "Refrigerant" means a class I or class II substance as listed in 42 U.S.C. Section 7671a and rules adopted under that section.

(17)  "Registered technician" means an air conditioning and refrigeration technician who is registered with the department.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.001, 2.012(1), 26.028, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.318(b), (c), (d), eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 1, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.003.  Nonapplicability Of Law Governing Cancellation Of Certain Transactions.

Except as otherwise provided by this section, Chapter 601, Business & Commerce Code, does not apply to a good or service provided by a license holder under this chapter if the transaction involving the good or service is initiated by the consumer.  Chapter 601, Business & Commerce Code, does apply to a transaction that involves a breach of express warranty or a negligent installation in violation of a building code applicable to the good or service sold to the consumer.

Added by Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 937, Sec. 2, eff. June 19, 2009.



Subchapter B. Exemptions

Section  1302.051.  Limitation On Exemptions.

The exemptions provided by this subchapter do not exempt a person from the application of Subchapter H, except as otherwise provided by Subchapter H.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.052.  Application Of Municipal Ordinances.

Work performed by a person who is exempt from this chapter is subject to any permit, inspection, or approval required by a municipal ordinance.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.053.  Homeowners.

This chapter does not apply to a person who engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting in a building owned solely by the person as the person's home.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.054.  Certain Maintenance Personnel.

This chapter does not apply to a person who performs air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work if:

(1)  the person is a maintenance person or maintenance engineer and is a regular employee of the owner, lessee, or management company of the property where the work is being performed;

(2)  the person performs the work in connection with the business in which the person is employed; and

(3)  the person and the person's employer do not engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for the public.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.055.  Certain Utilities Personnel.

This chapter does not apply to a person who engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting and is regularly employed by a regulated electric or gas utility.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.056.  Engineers.

This chapter does not apply to a person who is licensed as an engineer under Chapter 1001 and engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting work in connection with the business in which the person is employed but does not engage in that work for the public.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.057.  Industrial Operation Personnel.

This chapter does not apply to a person who is employed by an industrial operation, including a chemical plant, petrochemical plant, refinery, natural gas plant, or natural gas treating plant, and performs process cooling or heating work for the operation.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.058.  Certain Products Or Equipment.

This chapter does not apply to a person who engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting on:

(1)  a portable or self-contained ductless air conditioning product that has a cooling capacity of three tons or less;

(2)  a portable or self-contained heating product that does not require the forced movement of air outside the heating unit;

(3)  environmental air conditioning equipment that is intended for temporary use and is not fixed in place; or

(4)  a residential refrigerator, freezer, or ice machine.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.059.  Motor Vehicles.

This chapter does not apply to a person who engages in or employs a person who engages in air conditioning services only on a motor vehicle or MVAC-like appliance air conditioner.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.060.  Vent Hoods.

This chapter does not apply to a person who installs, repairs, or removes a vent hood of the type commonly used in residential or commercial kitchens.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.061.  Manufactured Homes.

This chapter does not apply to a person or entity licensed as a manufacturer, retailer, rebuilder, or installer under Chapter 1201 and engaged exclusively in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for manufactured homes if the installation of air conditioning components at the site where the home will be occupied is performed by a person licensed under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.062.  No License Required For Certain Assistants.

A person is not required to hold a license if the person assists in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting under the supervision of a license holder.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.063.  No Exemption For Certain Persons Licensed Under Other Law.

A person who is licensed and engaged in business in this state as a plumber or who is regulated under Chapter 113, Natural Resources Code, may not engage or offer or attempt to engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting without a license under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Subchapter C. Executive Director And Department Powers And Duties

Section  1302.101.  General Powers And Duties.

(a) The commission shall adopt rules for the practice of air conditioning and refrigeration contracting that are at least as strict as the standards provided by:

(1)  the Uniform Mechanical Code; and

(2)  the International Mechanical Code.

(b)  The executive director shall prescribe the design of an original and a renewal license.

(c)  The commission shall maintain a record of the commission's proceedings under this chapter.

(d)  The executive director may authorize disbursements necessary to implement this chapter, including disbursements for office expenses, equipment costs, and other necessary facilities.

(e)  The department may examine any criminal conviction, guilty plea, or deferred adjudication of an applicant for issuance or renewal of a license, including by obtaining any criminal history record information permitted by law.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.003, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 2, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section  1302.102.  Insurance Requirements.

(a) The executive director shall set insurance requirements for a license holder under this chapter.

(b)  The executive director may waive the insurance requirements for a license holder who does not engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for the public.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.029, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.321, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.103.  Rules Regarding Use And Display Of License.

The commission, with the advice of the advisory board, shall adopt rules relating to the use, display, and advertisement of a license.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.004, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.104.  Contracts For Enforcement.

The department may contract with another state agency or a political subdivision of the state to enforce this chapter and rules adopted under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.105.  Personnel; Examiners.

(a) The department may employ personnel necessary to administer this chapter.

(b)  The department shall employ at least two full-time air conditioning and refrigeration contractors to serve as examiners.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.106.  Directory Of License Holders.

(a) The department shall annually publish a directory of license holders.

(b)  The department may sell the directory on payment of a reasonable fee set by the commission.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Subchapter D. Consumer Interest Information And Complaints

Section  1302.151.  Consumer Interest Information.

(a) The executive director shall prepare information of consumer interest describing:

(1)  the functions performed by the executive director under this chapter; and

(2)  the rights of a consumer affected by this chapter.

(b)  The information must describe the procedure by which a consumer complaint is filed with and resolved by the executive director.

(c)  The executive director shall make the information available to the public.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.030, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.323, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter E. Air Conditioning And Refrigeration Contractors Advisory Board

Section 1302.201.  Advisory Board Membership.

The air conditioning and refrigeration contractors advisory board consists of seven members appointed by the presiding officer of the commission, with the commission's approval, and two ex officio nonvoting members.  One member of the advisory board must be a public member.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.005, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2009, 81st Leg., R.S., Ch. 457, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2009.



Section  1302.202.  Appointed Members.

(a) Each appointed advisory board member must be experienced in the design, installation, construction, maintenance, service, repair, or modification of equipment used for environmental air conditioning, commercial refrigeration, or process cooling or heating. Of the appointed members:

(1)  one must be an official of a municipality with a population of more than 250,000;

(2)  one must be an official of a municipality with a population of not more than 250,000; and

(3)  four must be full-time licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractors, as follows:

(A)  one member who holds a Class A license and practices in a municipality with a population of more than 250,000;

(B)  one member who holds a Class B license and practices in a municipality with a population of more than 250,000;

(C)  one member who holds a Class A license and practices in a municipality with a population of more than 25,000 but not more than 250,000; and

(D)  one member who holds a Class B license and practices in a municipality with a population of not more than 25,000.

(b)  At least one appointed advisory board member must be an air conditioning and refrigeration contractor who employs organized labor and at least two appointed members must be air conditioning and refrigeration contractors who are licensed engineers.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.203.  Ex Officio Members.

The executive director and the chief administrator of this chapter serve as ex officio, nonvoting members of the advisory board.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.031, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.323, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.204.  Advisory Board Duties.

(a) The advisory board shall advise the commission in adopting rules and in administering and enforcing this chapter.

(b)  The advisory board shall advise the commission in setting fees under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.006, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.205.  Terms; Vacancy.

(a) Appointed advisory board members serve staggered six-year terms. The terms of two appointed members expire on February 1 of each odd-numbered year.

(b)  If a vacancy occurs during an appointed member's term, the presiding officer of the commission, with the commission's approval, shall fill the vacancy for the remainder of the unexpired term with a person who represents the same interests as the predecessor.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.007, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.206.  Presiding Officer.

The presiding officer of the commission, with the commission's approval, shall designate one member of the advisory board to serve as presiding officer of the board for two years.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.008, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.207.  Compensation; Reimbursement.

An appointed advisory board member serves without compensation but is entitled to reimbursement for actual and necessary expenses incurred in performing functions as an advisory board member, subject to any applicable limitation on reimbursement provided by the General Appropriations Act.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.208.  Meetings.

(a) The advisory board shall meet at least every six months and may meet at other times at the call of the presiding officer.

(b)  The advisory board shall meet in this state at a place designated by the board.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.209.  Vote Required For Action.

A decision of the advisory board is not effective unless it receives the affirmative vote of at least four members.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Subchapter F. License Requirements

Section  1302.251.  License Required.

(a) A person may not engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting unless the person holds a license under this subchapter or Subchapter G.

(b)  A license issued under this subchapter is valid throughout the state. A person who holds a license issued under this subchapter is not required to hold a municipal license under Subchapter G to engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting in any municipality in this state.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.252.  Requirement For Air Conditioning And Refrigeration Contracting Company.

(a) An air conditioning and refrigeration contracting company must employ full-time in each permanent office a license holder who holds an appropriate license assigned to that company.

(b)  A company that does not employ a license holder as required by Subsection (a) at the time a contract for air conditioning and refrigeration contracting services is signed and at the time the services are performed may not collect a fee or otherwise enforce the contract.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.253.  License Classifications.

(a) The executive director shall issue a Class A or Class B air conditioning and refrigeration contractor license.

(b)  A Class A license entitles the license holder to engage in each type of air conditioning and refrigeration contracting that is endorsed on the license in relation to a system, a product, or equipment of any size or capacity.

(c)  A Class B license entitles the license holder to engage in each type of air conditioning and refrigeration contracting that is endorsed on the license in relation to a system, a product, or equipment of not more than:

(1)  25 tons cooling capacity; or

(2)  1.5 million British thermal units per hour output heating capacity.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.032, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.325, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.254.  License Endorsements.

(a) An air conditioning and refrigeration contractor license must be endorsed with one or both of the following endorsements:

(1)  an environmental air conditioning endorsement; or

(2)  a commercial refrigeration and process cooling or heating endorsement.

(b)  An environmental air conditioning endorsement entitles the license holder to engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for environmental air conditioning within the class of license held.

(c)  A commercial refrigeration and process cooling or heating endorsement entitles the license holder to engage in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for commercial refrigeration and process cooling or heating within the class of license held.

(d)  A license holder may not engage in a type of air conditioning and refrigeration contracting for which the person's license is not endorsed.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.255.  Eligibility Requirements.

(a) An applicant for a license under this chapter must:

(1)  be at least 18 years old; and

(2)  have at least 36 months of practical experience with the tools of the trade in the preceding five years.

(b)  For purposes of determining an applicant's practical experience under Subsection (a)(2), a degree or diploma in air conditioning engineering, refrigeration engineering, or mechanical engineering is equivalent to two years of practical experience if:

(1)  the degree or diploma is from an institution of higher education; and

(2)  the institution's program is approved by the Texas Board of Professional Engineers for the purpose of licensing engineers.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.256.  Application; Fee.

(a) An applicant for a license must submit a verified application on a form prescribed by the executive director.

(b)  The application must specify the class of license and each endorsement for which the applicant is applying.

(c)  The application must be accompanied by:

(1)  a statement containing evidence satisfactory to the executive director of the applicant's practical experience required by Section 1302.255(a)(2); and

(2)  the examination fee.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.033, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.326, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.257.  Examinations.

(a) The executive director shall prescribe:

(1)  a separate examination for each class of license; and

(2)  within each class of license, a separate examination for:

(A)  an environmental air conditioning endorsement; and

(B)  a commercial refrigeration and process cooling or heating endorsement.

(b)  The executive director shall prescribe the method and content of an examination administered under this chapter and shall set compliance requirements for the examination. To obtain an endorsement, an applicant must pass the examination for the endorsement.

(c)  The examination shall be offered on a monthly basis or more frequently as determined by the executive director.

(d)  The examination shall be offered at locations within the state as determined by the executive director. The examination may be offered by computer at locations within the state as determined by the executive director.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.034, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.327, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.260.  Issuance And Term Of License.

(a) On payment of the license fee, the executive director shall issue an air conditioning and refrigeration contractor license to an applicant who:

(1)  meets the requirements of this subchapter;

(2)  provides evidence of insurance coverage required by the executive director in accordance with this chapter; and

(3)  passes the applicable examination.

(b)  A license issued under this chapter expires at the end of the license period set by the commission.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.035, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.330, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.261.  Temporary License.

The commission by rule may provide for the issuance of a temporary air conditioning and refrigeration contracting license to an applicant who:

(1)  submits to the executive director an application on a form prescribed by the executive director; and

(2)  pays the required fees.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.009, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.262.  Notice To Municipalities.

(a) A person who obtains a license under this subchapter shall provide a notice to the municipal authority that enforces air conditioning and refrigeration contracting regulations in the municipality in which the person engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting.

(b)  The notice must inform the municipality that the person has obtained a license under this subchapter and must be in the form required by the municipality.

(c)  A municipality may charge a fee to a person who provides the notice required by this section. The municipality shall set the fee in an amount reasonable and necessary to administer this section.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section 1302.263.  Limitation On License Holder Or Registered Technician.

A person licensed under this chapter may not:

(1)  perform or offer or attempt to perform an act, service, or function that is:

(A)  defined as the practice of engineering under Chapter 1001, unless the person holds a license under that chapter;

(B)  regulated under Chapter 113, Natural Resources Code, unless the person holds a license or is exempt by rule under that chapter; or

(C)  defined as plumbing under Chapter 1301, unless the person holds a license under that chapter; or

(2)  use the services of a person who is not a registered technician or a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor to assist in the performance of air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 3, eff. September 1, 2007.



Subchapter G. Municipal Licensing And Regulation

Section  1302.301.  Municipal License.

An air conditioning and refrigeration contractor license issued by a municipality of this state and that complies with the requirements of this subchapter is valid under the terms of the license within the municipality.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.302.  Municipal License: Eligibility Requirements.

An applicant for a municipal license must:

(1)  pass an examination that covers the same subjects as the examination required under Subchapter F for a license of the class that entitles the holder of the license to perform the work the applicant proposes to perform; and

(2)  meet experience requirements that are at least as strict as the requirements under Section 1302.255(a)(2).

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.303.  Municipal Air Conditioning And Refrigeration Standards.

(a) A municipality may by ordinance adopt and enforce standards for air conditioning and refrigeration contractors that are consistent with the standards established under this chapter.

(b)  The municipality shall report a violation of the ordinance to the executive director not later than the 10th day after the date the municipality acts to enforce the ordinance.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.036, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.332, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Subchapter H. Sale And Use Of Refrigerants

Section  1302.351.

  APPLICATION OF

Subchapter

. This subchapter does not apply to:

(1)  a "small appliance" as defined by 40 C.F.R. Section 82.152, as amended; or

(2)  a person who is exempt from this chapter under Section 1302.055, 1302.057, or 1302.059.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.352.  Compliance With Federal Requirements. (a)

A person who purchases, sells, or uses a refrigerant in this state shall comply with the requirements of the federal Clean Air Act (42 U.S.C. Section 7401 et seq.) and rules adopted under that Act.

(b)  Consistent with Subsection (a), the department shall regulate the sale and use of a refrigerant as provided by this subchapter.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.353.  Purchase Of Refrigerant: License Or Registration Required.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), a person may not purchase a refrigerant or equipment containing a refrigerant in this state unless the person holds:

(1)  a license under Subchapter F or G; or

(2)  a certificate of registration issued by the department under this subchapter.

(b)  A person authorized to purchase a refrigerant under other state or federal law may purchase a refrigerant if the person's use is exempt from this chapter under Section 1302.053, 1302.055, 1302.057, 1302.058, or 1302.059.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.354.  Registration.

(a) A person who is exempt from this chapter under Section 1302.054 or 1302.056 must obtain a certificate of registration from the department to purchase a refrigerant.

(b)  The commission by rule shall adopt requirements governing the registration and issuance of a certificate of registration.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.010, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.355.  Purchase Of Refrigerant: Evidence Requirement.

(a) Except as provided by Subsection (b), a person who purchases a refrigerant must provide to the seller evidence of the person's compliance with the applicable license or registration requirement under this chapter.

(b)  A purchaser described by Section 1302.353(b) is not required to provide evidence of the person's exemption to a seller.

(c)  The commission by rule shall establish requirements for evidence that satisfies this section.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 2.011, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.356.  Sale Or Use Of Certain Refrigerants Prohibited.

A person may not:

(1)  sell a flammable refrigerant or refrigerant substitute that contains a liquid petroleum-based product for use in an automotive, aviation, commercial, or residential air conditioning or refrigeration system; or

(2)  use a flammable refrigerant or refrigerant substitute that contains a liquid petroleum-based product in the maintenance or installation of any system relating to aircraft.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Subchapter I. Disciplinary Action And Procedures

Section  1302.401.  Disciplinary Action.

(a) A person is subject to the denial of an application, imposition of an administrative penalty under Subchapter F, Chapter 51, or disciplinary action under Section 51.353 if the person:

(1)  violates this chapter or a rule adopted under this chapter; or

(2)  violates a municipal ordinance adopted under Section 1302.303.

(b)  A violation of this chapter includes:

(1)  failing to provide proper installation, service, or mechanical integrity;

(2)  intentionally or knowingly misrepresenting a necessary service, service to be provided, or service that has been provided; or

(3)  making a fraudulent promise to induce a person to contract for services.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 4, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.402.  Administrative Procedures.

A proceeding for the denial of a license or registration application or disciplinary action and an appeal from that proceeding are governed by Chapter 2001, Government Code.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 5, eff. September 1, 2007.



Subchapter J. Penalties And Enforcement Provisions

Section  1302.451.  Emergency And Cease And Desist Orders.

(a) The executive director may issue an emergency order as necessary to enforce this chapter if the executive director determines that an emergency exists requiring immediate action to protect the public health and safety.

(b)  The executive director may issue the emergency order without notice and hearing or with any notice and hearing the executive director considers practicable under the circumstances. The executive director shall set the time and place for a hearing to affirm, modify, or set aside an emergency order that was issued without a hearing.

(c)  The executive director may issue a cease and desist order.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003. Amended by Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 816, Sec. 26.037, eff. Sept. 1, 2003; Acts 2003, 78th Leg., ch. 1276, Sec. 14A.335, eff. Sept. 1, 2003.



Section  1302.452.  Citations For Certain Violations. (a)

A municipal or county official may issue a citation to an air conditioning and refrigeration contracting company that engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting without complying with Section 1302.252.

(b)  The department or a municipal air conditioning or refrigeration inspector within the jurisdiction of the municipality in which a violation occurs may issue a citation to a person who violates Section 1302.353(a) or 1302.355(a).

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.



Section  1302.453.  Criminal Penalty.

(a) A person commits an offense if the person:

(1)  knowingly engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting without holding a license issued under this chapter; or

(2)  purchases a refrigerant or equipment containing a refrigerant in this state in violation of Section 1302.353, 1302.355, or 1302.356.

(b)  It is an exception to the application of this section with respect to a purchase of a refrigerant or equipment containing a refrigerant in this state in violation of Section 1302.356 that the refrigerant or equipment is purchased for use only in a motor vehicle and that use is authorized by the United States Environmental Protection Agency.

(c)  An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor.

Added by Acts 2001, 77th Leg., ch. 1421, Sec. 3, eff. June 1, 2003.

Amended by:

Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 365, Sec. 1, eff. June 17, 2005.



Subchapter K. Air Conditioning And Refrigeration Technicians

Section 1302.501.  Registration Required.

(a) A person may not act or offer to act as an air conditioning and refrigeration technician unless the person is registered under this subchapter.

(b)  A registration is valid throughout the state.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. June 30, 2008.



Section 1302.502.  Rules.

The executive director shall adopt rules:

(1)  providing for the registration of technicians as prescribed by this subchapter; and

(2)  establishing fees for issuance and renewal of a registration.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.503.  Supervision Requirements For Registrants.

An air conditioning and refrigeration technician must be supervised by an air conditioning and refrigeration contractor licensed under this chapter.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. June 30, 2008.



Section 1302.504.  Application; Fee.

(a) An applicant for registration must submit an application on a form prescribed by the commission.

(b)  The completed application must be accompanied by the application fee.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.505.  Issuance And Term Of Registration.

(a) On receipt of a completed application, the department shall register an applicant who meets the requirements of this subchapter.

(b)  A registration is valid for one year from the date of issuance.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.506.  Temporary Registration.

(a) An applicant for registration may request a temporary registration. The executive director shall issue a temporary registration that expires on the 21st day after the date of issuance to an applicant who meets the qualifications for temporary registration.

(b)  The commission shall adopt rules providing for the issuance of a temporary registration under this section, including the qualifications and fee required for the registration.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.507.  Renewal Of Registration.

To renew a registration, a registered technician must:

(1)  submit a renewal request on a form prescribed by the executive director; and

(2)  pay the required renewal fee.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2007.



Section 1302.508.  Certified Technician.

A registered technician may be certified by the department and use the designation "certified technician" if the registered technician:

(1)  completes an application for certification on a form prescribed by the executive director;

(2)  pays the application fee; and

(3)  provides the department with proof that the registered technician successfully completed a nationally recognized and administered certification examination or another examination of equal or greater difficulty approved by the department.

Added by Acts 2007, 80th Leg., R.S., Ch. 1174, Sec. 6, eff. September 1, 2007.


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