§140.168 Continuing Education
(a) Each registered code enforcement officer and code enforcement officer in training must meet the renewal requirements set out in this section.
(b) Code enforcement officers in training who apply to upgrade prior to the department's issuance of notice regarding the expiration of their registration as required by §140.161(c)(1) of this title (relating to Code Enforcement Registration Renewal) are not required to submit continuing education hours in order to upgrade.
(c) Each registered code enforcement officer and code enforcement officer in training must obtain and show proof of not less than six continuing education hours as set forth in this section within the twelve months preceding renewal of a registration issued for one year, or not less than 12 continuing education hours as set forth in this section within the 24 months preceding renewal of a registration issued for two years, at least one hour of which must be in legal/legislative issues as provided in subsection (j)(12) of this section.
(d) Only continuing education activities conducted in accordance with this section shall be considered approved by the department and may be represented to the public as acceptable for registration renewal for registered code enforcement officers in Texas.
(e) Department approved continuing education activities for license renewal include the following:
(2) home-study training modules (including professional journals requiring successful completion of a test document);
(4) panel discussions;
(6) accredited college or university courses;
(7) video or film presentations with live instruction;
(8) field demonstrations;
(9) teleconferences; or
(10) other activities approved by the department.
(f) Only the following continuing education activities shall serve as a basis for registration renewal:
(1) approved by the department or its designee in accordance with this section; or
(2) approved by another professional regulatory agency in the State of Texas as acceptable continuing education for license renewal; and
(3) covering one or more of the curriculum areas listed in subsection (j) of this section.
(g) Continuing education activities must meet the following criteria if they are to be acceptable for continuing education credit:
(1) the activity must cover one or more of the curriculum areas listed in subsection (j) of this section;
(2) the activity must be conducted by an organization which is:
(A) an accredited college or university;
(B) a governmental agency, including local, state or federal agencies;
(C) an association with a membership of 25 or more persons, or it's affiliate; or
(D) a commercial education business;
(3) the activity must have a record keeping procedure which includes a register of who took the course and the number of continuing education units earned;
(4) the organization must implement procedures for verifying participant's attendance;
(5) the activity must be at least 50 minutes in length of actual instruction time. Round table discussions and more than one speaker for the total of 50 minutes per activity is permissible. No credit will be given for time used for other non-relevant activities; and
(6) the activity must be conducted in compliance with all applicable federal and state laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements for access to activities.
(h) Organizations shall send, e-mail, or fax notification of upcoming continuing education to the department at least 15 days prior to the event which includes the:
(1) date(s) of the continuing education activity;
(2) time of the continuing education activity;
(3) location of the continuing education activity;
(4) title of the activity; and
(5) name of the instructor(s).
(i) Commercial education businesses, in addition to the items listed in subsection (h) of this section, shall submit a request for approval on department forms; and shall not represent any course as approved until such approval is granted by the department in writing.
(j) The curriculum of an approved activity must include one or more of the following subjects:
(1) zoning and zoning ordinance enforcements;
(2) sign regulations;
(3) home occupations;
(4) housing codes and ordinances;
(5) building abatement;
(6) nuisance violations;
(7) abandoned vehicles;
(8) junk vehicles;
(9) health ordinances;
(10) basic processes of law related to code enforcement;
(11) professional, supervisory or management training related to the profession of code enforcement; or
(12) legislative or legal updates related to the profession of code enforcement.
(k) Documentation of continuing education activity shall be maintained by the organization for three years, including:
(1) a roster which shall include the following:
(A) name, address, phone number, code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training registration number, social security number (used to coordinate continuing education activity information with the department's records), and signature of the registrant; and
(B) number of continuing education hours earned by each individual;
(2) copy of notification and description of method transmitted to the department as required by subsection (h) of this section; and
(3) copies of all program materials sufficient to demonstrate compliance with this section.
(l) At the conclusion of the activity the organization shall distribute to those registered code enforcement officers and code enforcement officers in training who have successfully completed the activity a certificate of completion which shall include the name of the registrant; the name of the organization providing the training, the title of the activity; the date and location of the activity, and the continuing education hours earned. The certificate shall state "Approved in accordance with 25 Texas Administrative Code, §140.168 for code enforcement officer/code enforcement officer in training registration renewal in Texas." It shall include a breakdown of the hours earned on each topic listed under subsection (j) of this section.
(m) Each registered code enforcement officer and code enforcement officer in training shall collect and keep certificates of completion of approved courses. These certificates of completion will be used to document the attendance of a registered code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training at approved courses. The department will conduct random audits for compliance with this requirement.
(n) Failure to comply with the annual continuing education hour requirements for the registered code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training registration issued by the department will:
(1) result in suspension of a code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training registration until the necessary credits for continuing education are successfully completed; and
(2) require the registered code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training to make new application for registration as a code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training, if the registered code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training does not renew within one year after the original registration expired.
(o) The department may fail to accept any or all courses for registration renewal if an organization fails to file a timely notice of upcoming continuing education, fails to retain documentation related to the activity as required by this section, or fails to comply with any other requirements that are a basis for approval or that are a part of this subchapter.
(p) A registered code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training registration may file a written request for an extension of time for compliance with any deadline in this subsection. Such request for extension, not to exceed 30 days, shall be granted by the department if the registered code enforcement officer or code enforcement officer in training files appropriate documentation to show good cause for failure to comply timely with the requirements of this subsection. Good cause includes, but is not limited to, extended illness, extended medical disability, or other extraordinary hardship which is beyond the control of the person seeking the extension.
(q) Initial certification in the 12 months preceding renewal will be accepted as proof of the continuing education required by subsection (c) of this section if the certification is listed as follows.
(1) International Code Council (ICC):
(A) residential building inspector;
(B) residential electrical inspector;
(C) residential mechanical inspector;
(D) residential plumbing inspector;
(E) commercial building inspector;
(F) commercial electrical inspector;
(G) commercial mechanical inspector;
(H) commercial plumbing inspector;
(I) fire inspector I;
(J) fire inspector II;
(K) residential combination inspector;
(L) commercial combination inspector;
(M) certified building official;
(N) accessibility inspector;
(O) zoning inspector;
(P) property maintenance and housing inspector; or
(Q) housing code official; or
(2) International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials (IAPMO):
(A) voluntary plumbing inspector; or
(B) voluntary mechanical inspector; or
(3) National Fire Protection Association (NFPA):
(A) certified fire protection specialist;
(B) fire inspector I;
(C) fire inspector II;
(D) certified building inspector;
(E) certified residential electrical inspector; or
(F) certified master electrical inspector; or
(4) International Association of Electrical Inspectors (IAEI):
(A) building 1 and 2 family dwelling;
(B) building general;
(C) electrical 1 and 2 family dwelling;
(D) electrical general;
(E) fire protection general;
(F) fire protection plan review;
(G) mechanical 1 and 2 family dwelling;
(H) mechanical general;
(I) plumbing 1 and 2 family dwelling; or
(J) plumbing general or;
(5) National Swimming Pool Foundation (NSPF) certified pool-spa operator; or
(6) American Association of Code Enforcement (AACE):
(A) certified property maintenance and housing inspector;
(B) certified zoning enforcement officer;
(C) certified code enforcement officer; or
(D) code enforcement administrator.