The Wise Report - September 19, 2016

The Wise Report

Henry M. Wise, P.G.

September 19, 2016


The Texas Board of Professional Geoscientists (TBPG) proposes amendments to 22 TAC §§851.29, 851.31, and 851.32, and proposes new rules §§851.35, 851.113, 851.203 and 851.204, concerning the licensure and regulation of Professional Geoscientists. These amendments clarify the requirements regarding Endorsement and Reciprocal Licensure. Proposed amendments amend language to show that a licensing qualification can be endorsed by another licensing board for an applicant for P.G. licensure who is currently or has been licensed in the last ten years to practice a discipline of geoscience in Texas or another U.S. jurisdiction. Proposed amendments also clarify under "Licensure by similar examination" that an individual who has applied for licensure as a Professional Geoscientist in Texas may meet the licensing examination requirement by submitting proof of passage of examinations that are substantially similar to the applicable examination(s) as specified in §851.21.


TBPG proposes amendments to clarify the process of obtaining a temporary license and to be consistent with the requirements of temporary licensure authorized in Texas Occupations Code 1002.258. TBPG proposes amendments to clarify and simplify the process for obtaining a temporary P.G. license in Texas.


TBPG proposes amendments to clarify a licensee's duty to comply with continuing education (CE) program requirements, adding a specific 30-day deadline for when a licensee must respond and produce a CE activity log and supporting records. Amendments also clarify that a licensee is subject to disciplinary action for failure to satisfy CE program requirements during the applicable period, and that it is a separate violation to falsely report CE requirements for a renewal period.


TBPG proposes a new rule to outline the process for voluntary surrender of a license, registration, or certification.


TBPG proposes a new rule to require all persons who are the subject of a Board order to abide by the terms of that order, and that failure to abide by the terms of a Board order is grounds for disciplinary action. Additionally, the proposed new rule adds that the Board may deny a person's request for a license, registration or certification, or deny renewal of a license, registration or certification if the person has failed to timely pay an administrative penalty. This rule also allows the Board to apply money received from an individual to outstanding administrative penalties owed by that individual before applying it to any other fee or cost.


TBPG proposes a new rule to clarify that the Board may serve a notice of hearing on a respondent by sending it to his or her last known address as shown by the Board's records. The proposed rule also outlines the procedures for default cases, and details a procedure for informal disposition of cases in accordance with §2001.056 of the Texas Government Code. The proposed rule also addresses the process taken when an applicant with a criminal history applies for a license and does not show up at the hearing at the State Office of Administrative Hearings.


TBPG proposes a new rule to provide that the costs of an administrative hearing shall be borne by the licensee who chooses to appeal a Board Order. Specifically, the cost of transcribing the contested-case hearing and the cost of preparing the record shall be assessed to the person appealing the Board's order. This rule also outlines how these costs may be recovered.


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Henry M. Wise, P.G.

The Wise Report


Henry M. Wise, P.G.
Monday, September 19, 2016
Government Update