87th Texas Legislature: New Laws Affecting TDLR Licensees

The 87th Texas Legislature, Regular Session convened on January 12, 2021, and adjourned May 31, 2021. As a result of bills passed during the session, many new state laws that impact TDLR licensees and the public went into effect September 1, 2021. Some laws will take effect later.

To administer some of the changes required by these new laws, TDLR must first develop rules for implementation. Some bills include specific direction to TDLR on the rules the agency must adopt and the deadline for adoption. The rulemaking process gives the public an opportunity to provide comment and feedback at TDLR advisory board meetings.

The public can also participate in the process when proposed rules are published in the Texas Register and at meetings of the Texas Commission of Licensing and Regulation when the rules are discussed and brought up for a vote. The rulemaking process can take several months to complete.

To stay informed about proposed rule changes, sign up for email updates tailored to the specific licensing program you’re interested in (select "important notices" for your programs of interest).


TDLR-Related Bills Passed by the 87th Legislature

Below is a list of the bills enacted by the 87th Legislature related to TDLR and its programs. Clicking on the bill number will open a Texas Legislature Online page detailing the history of actions taken on the legislation as well as the text of the bill and other bill information.

More information on the legislative process and how a bill becomes law is available at the Texas Legislature web site.


Sunset Review

Highlights of HB 1560, TDLR’s Sunset bill, include:

  • Extending TDLR for another 12 years. The Texas Sunset Commission will next evaluate TDLR and whether it should remain an agency in 2033.
  • Deregulation of the Polygraph industry in Texas. As of Sept. 1, 2021, a Polygraph license will no longer be required to perform polygraph examinations.
  • Combining the Barbering and Cosmetology programs and creating a new board.
  • Deregulating specialty cosmetology licenses for wig stylists and wig salons as of Sept. 1, 2021. A cosmetology license will not be required to provide styling services for wigs.
  • Deregulating Combative Sports Seconds licenses, Combative Sports Matchmakers licenses and Combative Sports Event Coordinators licenses as of Sept. 1, 2021.
  • Moving Home Warranty regulation from the Texas Real Estate Commission to TDLR.
  • Reapportioning membership of the Driver Training and Traffic Safety Advisory Committee.

TDLR Programs

Air Conditioning & Refrigeration

HB 871 bans a municipality from charging air conditioning and refrigeration contractors a registration fee to work in that municipality.

Athletic Trainers

SB 40 authorizes the use of telehealth in certain health professional programs administered by TDLR.

Auctioneers

HB 1560, Sec. 2.09, requires TDLR in consultation with the Auctioneer Advisory Board to study the regulation of auctioneering and prepare a report with any findings and recommendations to improve public safety and increase efficiency. TDLR must submit the report to our standing legislative committees no later than January 1, 2023

Barbering

HB 1560, Article 3, combines the Barbering and Cosmetology programs, creates a new advisory board, and abolishes instructor licenses.

Behavior Analysts

SB 40 authorizes the use of telehealth in certain health professional programs administered by TDLR.

Combative Sports

HB 1560, Sec. 2.05, deregulates Combative Sports Seconds licenses, Combative Sports Matchmakers licenses and Combative Sports Event Coordinators licenses as of Sept. 1, 2021.

Cosmetology

HB 1560, Article 3, combines the Barbering and Cosmetology programs and creates a new board; abolishes wig salon and wig specialty licenses as of September 1, 2021; abolishes instructor licenses no later than September 1, 2023.

HB 3721 requires that human trafficking awareness signs displayed in cosmetology establishments include information about how to report suspicious activity to the Texas Department of Public Safety.

Dietitians

HB 4 amends current law relating to the provision and delivery of certain health care services, including under Medicaid and other public benefits programs; using telecommunications or information technology; and reimbursement for some of those services; makes permanent some of the waivers put into place during COVID-19

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

Driver Education and Safety

HB 1560, Article 5, makes extensive changes to DES licensing, CE and education requirements, curriculum hours, course approval fees and processes, and more.

HB 3212 requires that driver education courses include information about the dangers of street racing.

HB 3319 requires that driver education courses include safety information about driving around large trucks as well as information about laws requiring drivers to slow down or move over when emergency vehicles are pulled over on the side of the road.

SB 181 relating to suspension of a driver's license for persons convicted of certain offenses and the educational program required for reinstatement of a license following certain convictions.

SB 1831, Section 3, also known as The Julia Wells Act, requires that driver education courses include information about human trafficking prevention.

SB 2054 waives fees and costs associated with driver education and safety courses and driver license examinations for foster children, former foster children and youth experiencing homelessness.

Dyslexia Therapy

HB 4 amends current law relating to the provision and delivery of certain health care services, including under Medicaid and other public benefits programs; using telecommunications or information technology; and reimbursement for some of those services; makes permanent some of the waivers put into place during COVID-19

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

Hearing Instrument Fitters & Dispensers

HB 4 amends current law relating to the provision and delivery of certain health care services, including under Medicaid and other public benefits programs; using telecommunications or information technology; and reimbursement for some of those services; makes permanent some of the waivers put into place during COVID-19

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

Massage Therapy

HB 2803 provides commercial landlords or tenants in multiunit properties with the ability to terminate a lease if certain unlawful activities including human trafficking, prostitution or an illicit massage establishment occurs

HB 3721 requires massage establishments to post human trafficking awareness signs that include information on how to contact the Texas Department of Public Safety to report suspicious activity.

HB 1540 includes new criminal penalties for allowing prostitution in a massage establishment.

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

SB 1130 allows massage therapy schools to provide distance education in certain circumstances.

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Midwives

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

SB 1941 directs the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to create a strategic plan for improving the diagnosis and treatment of hyperemesis gravidarum, a disorder that occurs during pregnancy and can cause extreme, persistent nausea and vomiting that leads to dehydration, weight loss or electrolyte imbalance.

Motor Fuel Metering and Quality

HB 2106 creates the Financial Crimes Intelligence Center, which will track and investigate skimmers and coordinate law enforcement responses. The FCIC is housed in Tyler.

SB 2062 creates the Motor Fuel Metering and Quality Advisory Board.

Offender Education Providers

SB 181 relating to suspension of a driver's license for persons convicted of certain offenses and the educational program required for reinstatement of a license following certain convictions.

SB 1480 relating to the licensing and regulation of certain drug and alcohol related court-ordered educational programs; providing administrative penalties; requiring occupational licenses; authorizing fees; creating criminal offenses.

Orthotists & Prosthetists

HB 4 amends current law relating to the provision and delivery of certain health care services, including under Medicaid and other public benefits programs; using telecommunications or information technology; and reimbursement for some of those services; makes permanent some of the waivers put into place during COVID-19

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

Podiatry

HB 4 amends current law relating to the provision and delivery of certain health care services, including under Medicaid and other public benefits programs; using telecommunications or information technology; and reimbursement for some of those services; makes permanent some of the waivers put into place during COVID-19

HB 2509 creates a nationally accredited post-doctor of podiatric medicine program that will prepare podiatrists for independent practice of podiatric medicine in Texas.

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

SB 768 increases the criminal penalties for manufacture or delivery of fentanyl and related substances.

Polygraph Examiners

HB 1560, Article 2, Deregulates the Polygraph industry in Texas. As of Sept. 1, 2021, a Polygraph license is no longer required to perform polygraph examinations.

Property Tax Professionals

SB 916 relating to information regarding certain noncompliance by an appraisal district in the TDLR records of a professional property tax appraiser serving as chief appraiser for the district.

Service Contract Providers

HB 735 relating to service contracts for leased or purchased motor vehicles.

HB 1560, Article 4, transfers Residential Service Companies (Home Warranty) regulation from the Texas Real Estate Commission to TDLR.

Speech-Language Pathologists & Audiologists

HB 4 amends current law relating to the provision and delivery of certain health care services, including under Medicaid and other public benefits programs; using telecommunications or information technology; and reimbursement for some of those services; makes permanent some of the waivers put into place during COVID-19

SB 40 clarifies the authority of TDLR-regulated health professionals to provide telehealth services; requires a reference to a health professional performing "direct" observation of a patient to include provision of telehealth services; and allows TDLR to adopt rules governing telehealth services offered by its regulated professionals.

Towing

HB 914 authorizes designated municipal employees to request the removal and storage of certain abandoned or illegally parked or operated vehicles.

HB 1560, Sec. 1.23, amends requirements for the initial renewal of an incident management towing operator's license.

SB 15 relating to the Texas Consumer Privacy Act Phase I; creating criminal offenses; increasing the punishment for an existing criminal offense.

SB 860 exempts certain vehicles from vehicle towing regulations.

SB 1181 relating to the towing of certain property from a self-service storage facility for disposition by a vehicle storage facility.

Transportation Network Companies

HB 914 authorizes designated municipal employees to request the removal and storage of certain abandoned or illegally parked or operated vehicles.


Other Related Bills

TDLR – General

SB 800 relating to certain required reports or information received or prepared by state agencies and other governmental entities.

SB 968 prohibits Texas businesses from requiring customers to show proof of a COVID-19 vaccination.

SB 424 relating to state agency enforcement of laws regulating small businesses.

Human Trafficking

HB 1540 includes new criminal penalties for allowing prostitution in a massage establishment.

HB 2633 relating to resources provided to human trafficking victims and the establishment of the trafficked persons grant program.

HB 3721 requires massage establishments to post human trafficking awareness signs that include information on how to contact the Texas Department of Public Safety to report suspicious activity.

SB 1831, Section 3, also known as The Julia Wells Act, requires that driver education courses include information about human trafficking prevention.

Military/Veterans/Spouses

HB 139 relating to state occupational licensing of certain military veterans and military spouses.

Second Chances / Criminal Convictions

HB 757 relating to the consequences of successfully completing a period of deferred adjudication community supervision.