The Wise Report
Henry M. Wise, P.G.
July 10, 2010
Matt Cowan, with Lone Star Environmental, informed me that the state of Louisiana has passed legislation to register geologists practicing in Louisiana. Their PG board has yet to be set up, so there are currently no forms or rules set up, but the act is to take effect January 1, 2011. The grandfather period will end January 1, 2012. The legislation can be found at
http://www.legis.state.la.us/billdata/streamdocument.asp?did=720117 and appears to be similar to the Texas PG act.
The Texas Board of Professional Geoscientists (TBPG) proposes amendments to §§850.10, 850.60 - 850.63, 850.81, and 850.82, concerning the licensure and regulation of Professional Geoscientists to correct minor errors, improve the rules, and ensure that the rules reflect current legal, policy, and operational considerations. This set of proposed revisions is a result of the review of the entire chapter.
An amendment to the title of Subchapter A is proposed to rename the subchapter to Authority and Definitions. Amendments to §850.10 are proposed to improve the definitions of Act and rule; add definitions for advisory opinion, Board, licensee, and sanction; to delete the definitions of address of record, applicant, Chairman, Vice-Chairman, complainant, hearings examiner, examiner, administrative law judge, pleading, respondent, T.R.C.P., and U.S.P.S.; and to renumber the definitions accordingly.
An amendment to the title of Subchapter B is proposed to rename the subchapter to Organization and Responsibilities.
Amendments to §850.60 are proposed to rename the title of the section to Organization and Responsibilities of the Board - General Provisions; add a statement that the purpose of this chapter is to implement the provisions in the Texas Geoscience Practice Act (the Act), Texas Occupations Code Chapter 1002, concerning the licensure of Professional Geoscientists and regulation of the public practice of geoscience; and to reletter the section accordingly.
Amendments to §850.61 are proposed to rename the title of the section to Organization and Responsibilities of the Board - Meetings and to delete the specific revised date of Robert's Rules of Order.
Amendments to §850.62 are proposed to clarify the Board's duties of ensuring that unless exempted by the Texas Occupations Code Chapter 1002, a person may not use the Professional Geoscientist title or initials or represent that a person is qualified to engage in the public practice of geoscience and that a person does not take responsible charge of certain geoscientific reports or portions of reports unless the person is licensed under the authority provided to the Board under the Act; to clarify that the Act and rules adopted by the Board under the authority of the Act apply to every licensee, registered firm, Geoscientist-in-Training, and unlicensed individual or unregistered firm providing or offering to provide public geoscience services; to clarify that unless an exemption applies, the Board ensures that all firms offering to engage or engaging in the public practice of professional geoscience in Texas are registered as a Geoscience Firm; to provide that an individual meeting certain criteria who expresses an intent to become a licensed Professional Geoscientist may register with the Board as a Geoscientist-in-Training (GIT); to remove the subsections stating that complaints can be filed with the Board and that a complaint must be filed within two years of the event giving rise to the complaint. These items are addressed in Chapter 851 (relating to Texas Board of Geoscientists Licensing Rules). This section will be relettered accordingly.
Amendments to §850.63 are proposed to provide that a notice of its order imposing a sanction or penalty must include the specific disciplinary action to be taken, in addition to previously existing requirements and to remove the provision that upon request, exams may be offered in a foreign language at the expense of the requestor.
An amendment to §850.81 is proposed to update that the cost for providing public information is that as promulgated by the Office of the Attorney General.
An amendment to §850.82 is proposed to provide that the Executive Director shall determine the agency's position on disputes regarding issues with the processing of a drawn payment.
The text of these amendments can be found at: http://www.sos.state.tx.us/texreg/sos/PROPOSED/22.EXAMINING%20BOARDS.html#86. Comments on the proposal may be submitted in writing either in person or by courier to Molly Roman, Operations Manager, Texas Board of Professional Geoscientists, 333 Guadalupe Street, Austin, Texas 78711, by mail at P.O. Box 13225, Austin, Texas 78701, or by e-mail to email@example.com. When e-mailing comments, please indicate "Comments on Proposed Rules" in the e-mail subject line. Comments