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Professional Licensing and Certification Unit - Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) Transition

IMPORTANT INFORMATION REGARDING SENATE BILL 202

A new state law, Senate Bill 202, was recently passed by the Texas Legislature. The new law becomes effective September 1, 2015 and it impacts a number of programs administered through the DSHS Professional Licensing and Certification Unit.

The information below was distributed to the independent boards and committees of six licensing programs which will transfer from DSHS to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) in the 2016-2017 biennium. Additional information will be distributed as soon as it becomes available.

TO:  Board of Orthotics and Prosthetics
       Advisory Board of Athletic Trainers
       State Board of Examiners for Speech-Language Pathology and Audiology
       State Committee of Examiners in the Fitting and Dispensing of Hearing Instruments
       Texas State Board of Examiners of Dietitians
       Texas Midwifery Board

FROM: DSHS Division for Regulatory Services

DATE: July 8, 2015

RE: Impact of Senate Bill 202

Dear Members:

Below is important information about Senate Bill 202, which was recently enacted by the 84th Texas Legislature. The provisions of the bill have significant impact several licensing programs within the DSHS Professional Licensing and Certification Unit. 

  • The bill de-regulates (eliminates) the following licensing programs: bottled and vended water certificate of competency, contact lens dispensers, opticians, personal emergency response systems, bedding, indoor air quality in state buildings, rendering, and tanning bed facilities, effective 9/1/15. Licenses will no longer be required in Texas for those occupations/businesses. 

  • The bill transfers the following licensing programs to the Texas Medical Board (TMB): respiratory care practitioners, medical radiologic technologists, medical physicists, and perfusionists. A transition plan will be developed between the two agencies to include a date for transition.

  • The bill transfers the following licensing programs to the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation (TDLR) during the next two years: athletic trainers, dietitians, fitters and dispensers of hearing instruments, midwives, orthotists and prosthetists, speech-language pathologists and audiologists, and dyslexia therapists and practitioners. A transition plan will be developed between the two agencies, and the plan will include the date of transfer, which must be accomplished no later than August 31, 2017. We expect that this transfer will be completed sometime in 2016. 

  • The bill discontinues the six boards named above on the transfer date established in the transition plan. TDLR is required to appoint an advisory board for each of the six professions. TDLR expects to begin accepting applications for advisory boards in August.

  • The bill transfers the following regulatory programs to TDLR during the Fiscal Year 2018/2019 biennium: code enforcement officers, laser hair removal, massage therapists, mold assessors and remediators, offender education providers, and sanitarians. A transition plan will be developed between the two agencies that will accomplish the transition no later than August 31, 2019. 

  • The bill does not transfer the following licensing programs: Marriage and Family Therapists, Licensed Professional Counselors, Social Workers, Council on Sex Offender Treatment, and Licensed Chemical Dependency Counselors. 

  • The bill provides that rules that are in effect on the date of transfer will continue in effect until amended by TDLR.

At the end of the legislative session, DSHS staff immediately began planning for implementation of SB 202. Initial meetings with TMB and TDLR have been held and we are planning next steps. We have also been meeting with HR and Legal regarding potential impacts on staff. Our goal is to provide all staff the opportunity for a job without a break in service.

We have provided TDLR staff with a list of upcoming board meetings and we expect that their representatives may be attending board/committee meetings in the near future.

This chart is a useful tool in understanding the impact of the bill on each of the professional licensing programs. To read, download, or print SB 202, please visit http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/ and enter SB 202 in the search field. To learn more about the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation, please visit www.tdlr.texas.gov.

We will continue to provide you with updates regarding this transition as additional information becomes available. We are committed to assuring that our daily work in support of all programs continues. Please know that we will work closely with TDLR to ensure a successful transition and to minimize the impact to license holders, stakeholders, and the public. 

Last updated December 28, 2015