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I would like to begin by publically welcoming the three new members to the Inspector Committee, who were appointed in February. Mike Morgan of Brownwood was appointed as a new inspector member, to serve a six-year term, and Robert John Daehn of Aransas Pass and Dave Motley of Garland were appointed as public members to serve two-year terms. In addition, Lee Warren was reappointed to another six-year inspector term and public member Barbara Evans was reappointed for an additional two-year term. I want like thank all of the inspectors who took the time to submit their applications. Your active interest and involvement in Committee matters help ensure the Committee recommends sound public policy regarding inspector matters. Finally, I want to thank the Inspector Interview Committee: Commissioner Adrian Arriaga, and inspectors and past Committee Chairs Red Willcox and Larry Foster, for their time and commitment to the process.

We are four months into the Session and it’s been a busy one. While there is no bill specifically related to the regulation of inspectors, there are several bill that may have an impact on the licensing authority of the of all regulatory agencies, including bills that address the licensing requirements for active military, their spouses and veterans, and several bills that specify what criminal actives an agency can consider in determining someone’s fitness to be licensed. Of course, the Agency Sunset Bill deals directly with the regulatory authority of this Agency.  As I write this, the Senate version of the Sunset bill has been voted out of the Senate and is currently going through the committee process on the House side.  

Since the last meeting of the Inspector Committee in February, the SOP Subcommittee met to finish up their initial review of the SOPs to determine what items need updating or amending.  The Subcommittee will now begin the process of taking a deeper look at those identified items at future meetings.  The Education Subcommittee also met to discuss possible updates to the Inspector Legal and Ethics book. The educations Subcommittee will meet again on Friday, February 12, to make its final Commission’s recommendations on those updates and to discuss proposed rules to implement the Sunset Commissions management recommendation that the Committee streamlines inspector education to remove redundancies and better track to the national exam requirements. As reported in my last update, the Committee is recommending reducing the hours of qualifying education to 170 hours, from the current requirement of over 300 hours, the most required by any state. This plan is the first step to focus on the quality of education over the quantity of education. The Subcommittee’s recommendations will be discussed by the full inspector Committee at its meeting on April 15.

Over the next couple of months, there will be plenty of opportunities for you to provide input and I encourage to do so.  As a reminder, the meetings are always videotaped and archived on the TREC website and annotated by agenda item so that you can go directly to any portion of the meeting that interests you. This is an easy way to keep up-to-date on the goings on of the Inspector Committee if you are unable to attend them in person. As always, thank you for your continued support.