Governor Abbott Waives Certain Regulations For Qualified Plumber’s Apprentices
February 20, 2021 | Austin, Texas | Press Release
Governor Greg Abbott has waived certain regulations for certain registered and qualified Plumber’s Apprentices in Texas. These waivers allow a Plumber’s Apprentice, who has met all other qualifications, to temporarily perform plumbing repairs without ‘direct’ supervision by a licensed plumber so long as the qualified Plumber’s Apprentice works under the general supervision of a responsible master plumber.
“These waivers will help meet the plumbing needs of Texans who have experienced burst pipes and other related damage from the severe winter weather,” said Governor Abbott. “By allowing certain registered and qualified Plumber’s Apprentices to perform these repairs, we will be able to expedite the recovery process throughout our communities.”
Officially Waived Regulations for Qualified Plumber Apprentices
In accordance with section 418.016 of the Texas Government Code, the Office of the Governor grants TSBPE’s request to temporarily suspend Tex. Occ. Code 1301.404 and Tex. Occ. Code 1301.3576(2).
In addition, the Office of the Governor grants TSBPE’s request relating to Tex. Occ. Code 1301.403 and hereby temporarily suspends Tex. Occ. Code 1301.403(c)-(d) to the extent necessary to permit renewals under Tex. Occ. Code 1301.403(c) for a person whose license, endorsement, or registration has been expired for two years or more, provided, however, that this suspension applies only where the person is providing services relating to damages from the declared disaster.
This suspension is in effect until terminated by the Office of the Governor or until disaster declaration is lifted or expires.
1. Texas Occupations Code §1301.404, Mandatory Continuing Professional Education
a. Currently, licensed plumbers or those who hold endorsements are required to complete six (6) hours of continuing education a year to renew their license or endorsement. For the foreseeable future live classes or even correspondence course offerings will be sparse and time consuming for those that could quickly assist Texans with plumbing repairs. Further, any gap in licensure will impede the process across Texas of those plumbing repairs. These classes can be made up in the future as needed.
2. Texas Occupations Code §1301.3576(2), Certificate of Insurance and Training for Responsible Master Plumber
a. Before being able to contract for plumbing work, Master Plumbers are required to produce proof of insurance to the Board, and take a twenty-four (24) hour training course. The Board requests suspension of the training course subsection for the Responsible Master Plumber designation to allow those who have produced acceptable insurance to be able to contract and perform plumbing work. This will allow plumbers applying for the Responsible Master Plumber designation to be able to begin the rebuilding process much faster. Further, for the same reasons noted above, Responsible Master Plumber course offerings will be sparse for the time being.
3. Texas Occupations Code §1301.403(d), Procedure for Renewal
a. Currently, a person holding a license, registration, or endorsement that has been expired for two or more years must undergo all the original requirements to renew that license, registration, or endorsement. In some cases, this means waiting to retake an examination. The Board requests suspension of this subsection to allow those who have met the requirements for a license, registration, or endorsement in the past, to return to the industry and aid in the rebuilding efforts by simply paying their past renewals fees, meeting the basic classroom education requirements and without the need for examination.
Governor Abbott Holds Call With Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners
February 19, 2021 | Austin, Texas | Press Release
Governor Greg Abbot today held a call with the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners (TSBPE) to discuss the current response to severe winter weather that has impacted Texas. A readout of the call can be found below:
The Governor thanked the members of the TSBPE for helping their fellow Texans throughout the severe winter weather over the past week. Governor Abbott discussed actions that the State has already taken to help Texans with burst pipes and other plumbing-related damages from the winter weather. The Governor heard from members of the TSBPE on other ways the state can assist Texans in need, as well as ways to support plumbers who are working across the state of Texas. The Governor ended the call by extending the state of Texas’ gratitude for plumbers across the state, and assured TSBPE that the state will continue to do whatever it takes to help plumbers efficiently and safely serve their fellow Texans.