Bill Text: TX HB912 | 2017-2018 | 85th Legislature | Comm Sub

NOTE: There are more recent revisions of this legislation. Read Latest Draft
Bill Title: Relating to the licensing and regulation of providers of driver and traffic safety education.

Spectrum: Slight Partisan Bill (Republican 3-1)

Status: (Passed) 2017-06-15 - Effective immediately [HB912 Detail]

Download: Texas-2017-HB912-Comm_Sub.html
 
 
  By: Romero, Jr., Springer, Frullo H.B. No. 912
        (Senate Sponsor - Taylor of Collin)
         (In the Senate - Received from the House May 3, 2017;
  May 17, 2017, read first time and referred to Committee on
  Transportation; May 22, 2017, reported favorably by the following
  vote:  Yeas 6, Nays 1; May 22, 2017, sent to printer.)
Click here to see the committee vote
 
 
A BILL TO BE ENTITLED
 
AN ACT
 
  relating to the licensing and regulation of providers of driver and
  traffic safety education.
         BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF TEXAS:
         SECTION 1.  Sections 1001.055(a), (a-1), and (a-2),
  Education Code, are amended to read as follows:
         (a)  The department shall provide to each licensed or exempt
  driver education school and to each parent-taught course provider
  approved under this chapter driver education certificates or
  certificate numbers to enable the school or approved parent-taught
  course provider to [print and] issue department-approved driver
  education certificates to certify completion of an approved driver
  education course and satisfy the requirements of Sections
  521.204(a)(2), Transportation Code, 521.1601, Transportation Code,
  as added by Chapter 1253 (H.B. 339), Acts of the 81st Legislature,
  Regular Session, 2009, and 521.1601, Transportation Code, as added
  by Chapter 1413 (S.B. 1317), Acts of the 81st Legislature, Regular
  Session, 2009.
         (a-1)  A certificate [printed and] issued by a driver
  education school or parent-taught course provider approved under
  this chapter must:
               (1)  be in a form required by the department; and
               (2)  include an identifying certificate number
  provided by the department that may be used to verify the
  authenticity of the certificate with the driver education school or
  approved parent-taught course provider.
         (a-2)  A driver education school or parent-taught course
  provider approved under this chapter that purchases driver
  education certificate numbers shall issue [provide for the printing
  and issuance of] original and duplicate certificates in a manner
  that, to the greatest extent possible, prevents the unauthorized
  production or the misuse of the certificates. The driver education
  school or approved parent-taught course provider shall
  electronically submit to the department in the manner established
  by the department data identified by the department relating to
  issuance of department-approved driver education certificates with
  the certificate numbers.
         SECTION 2.  Sections 1001.056(b), (c-1), and (g), Education
  Code, are amended to read as follows:
         (b)  The department shall provide each licensed course
  provider with course completion certificate numbers to enable the
  provider to [print and] issue department-approved uniform
  certificates of course completion.
         (c-1)  A course provider shall provide for the [printing and]
  issuance of original and duplicate certificates in a manner that,
  to the greatest extent possible, prevents the unauthorized
  production or the misuse of the certificates.
         (g)  A course provider shall issue a duplicate certificate by
  United States mail or commercial or electronic delivery.  The
  commission by rule shall determine the amount of the fee for
  issuance of a duplicate certificate under this subsection.
         SECTION 3.  Section 1001.112, Education Code, is amended by
  amending Subsection (a) and adding Subsections (a-1) and (e) to
  read as follows:
         (a)  The commission by rule shall provide for approval of a
  driver education course conducted by the following persons with the
  noted relationship to [the parent, stepparent, foster parent, legal
  guardian, grandparent, or step-grandparent of] a person who is
  required to complete a driver education course to obtain a Class C
  license:
               (1)  a parent, stepparent, foster parent, legal
  guardian, grandparent, or step-grandparent; or
               (2)  an individual who:
                     (A)  has been designated by a parent, a legal
  guardian, or a judge of a court with jurisdiction over the person on
  a form prescribed by the department;
                     (B)  is at least 25 years of age or older;
                     (C)  does not charge a fee for conducting the
  course;
                     (D)  has at least seven years of driving
  experience; and
                     (E)  otherwise qualifies to conduct a course under
  Subsection (a-1).
         (a-1)  The rules must provide that the student driver spend a
  minimum number of hours in classroom and behind-the-wheel
  instruction and that the person conducting the course:
               (1)  possess a valid license for the preceding three
  years that has not been suspended, revoked, or forfeited in the past
  three years for an offense that involves the operation of a motor
  vehicle;
               (2)  has not been convicted of:
                     (A)  criminally negligent homicide; or
                     (B)  driving while intoxicated in the past seven
  years; and
               (3)  [is not disabled because of mental illness; and
               [(4)]  does not have six or more points assigned to the
  person's driver's license under Subchapter B, Chapter 708,
  Transportation Code, at the time the person begins conducting the
  course.
         (e)  The department may not charge a fee for the submission
  of proof of completion of the course or passage of an examination
  under Subsection (c).
         SECTION 4.  Section 1001.202(b), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  A driving safety school may use multiple classroom
  locations to teach a driving safety course if each location[:
               [(1)]  is approved by the [parent school and the]
  department[;
               [(2)  has the same name as the parent school; and
               [(3)  has the same ownership as the parent school].
         SECTION 5.  Section 1001.204(b), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  The department shall approve an application for a driver
  education school license if the application is submitted on a form
  approved by the executive director, includes the fee, and on
  inspection of the premises of the school, it is determined that the
  school:
               (1)  has courses, curricula, and instruction of a
  quality, content, and length that reasonably and adequately achieve
  the stated objective for which the courses, curricula, and
  instruction are offered;
               (2)  has adequate space, equipment, instructional
  material, and instructors to provide training of good quality in
  the classroom and behind the wheel;
               (3)  has instructors who have adequate educational
  qualifications and experience;
               (4)  provides to each student before enrollment:
                     (A)  a copy of:
                           (i)  the refund policy;
                           (ii)  the schedule of tuition, fees, and
  other charges; and
                           (iii)  the regulations relating to absence,
  grading policy, and rules of operation and conduct; and
                     (B)  the department's name, mailing address,
  telephone number, and Internet website address for the purpose of
  directing complaints to the department;
               (5)  maintains adequate records as prescribed by the
  department to show attendance and progress or grades and enforces
  satisfactory standards relating to attendance, progress, and
  conduct;
               (6)  on completion of training, issues each student a
  certificate indicating the course name and satisfactory
  completion;
               (7)  complies with all county, municipal, state, and
  federal regulations, including fire, building, and sanitation
  codes and assumed name registration;
               (8)  is financially sound and capable of fulfilling its
  commitments for training;
               (9)  [has owners and instructors who are of good
  reputation and character;
               [(10)]  maintains and publishes as part of its student
  enrollment contract the proper policy for the refund of the unused
  portion of tuition, fees, and other charges if a student fails to
  take the course or withdraws or is discontinued from the school at
  any time before completion;
               (10) [(11)]  does not use erroneous or misleading
  advertising, either by actual statement, omission, or intimation,
  as determined by the department;
               (11) [(12)]  does not use a name similar to the name of
  another existing school or tax-supported educational institution
  in this state, unless specifically approved in writing by the
  executive director;
               (12) [(13)]  submits to the department for approval the
  applicable course hour lengths and curriculum content for each
  course offered by the school;
               (13) [(14)]  does not owe an administrative penalty for
  a violation of this chapter; and
               (14) [(15)]  meets any additional criteria required by
  the department.
         SECTION 6.  Section 1001.205(b), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  The department shall approve an application for a
  driving safety school license if the application is submitted on a
  form approved by the executive director, includes the fee, and on
  inspection of the premises of the school, the department determines
  that the school:
               (1)  has driving safety courses, curricula, and
  instruction of a quality, content, and length that reasonably and
  adequately achieve the stated objective for which the course,
  curricula, and instruction are developed by the course provider;
               (2)  has adequate space, equipment, instructional
  material, and instructors to provide training of good quality;
               (3)  has instructors who have adequate educational
  qualifications and experience;
               (4)  maintains adequate records as prescribed by the
  department to show attendance and progress or grades and enforces
  satisfactory standards relating to attendance, progress, and
  conduct;
               (5)  complies with all county, municipal, state, and
  federal laws, including fire, building, and sanitation codes and
  assumed name registration;
               (6)  [has owners and instructors who are of good
  reputation and character;
               [(7)]  does not use erroneous or misleading
  advertising, either by actual statement, omission, or intimation,
  as determined by the department;
               (7) [(8)]  does not use a name similar to the name of
  another existing school or tax-supported educational establishment
  in this state, unless specifically approved in writing by the
  executive director;
               (8) [(9)]  maintains and uses the approved contract and
  policies developed by the course provider;
               (9) [(10)]  does not owe an administrative penalty for
  a violation of this chapter;
               (10) [(11)]  will not provide a driving safety course
  to a person for less than $25; and
               (11) [(12)]  meets additional criteria required by the
  department.
         SECTION 7.  Section 1001.206(b), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (b)  The department shall approve an application for a course
  provider license if the application is submitted on a form approved
  by the executive director, includes the fee, and on inspection of
  the premises of the school the department determines that:
               (1)  the course provider has an approved course that at
  least one licensed driving safety school is willing to offer;
               (2)  the course provider has adequate educational
  qualifications and experience;
               (3)  the course provider will:
                     (A)  develop and provide to each driving safety
  school that offers the approved course a copy of:
                           (i)  the refund policy; and
                           (ii)  the regulations relating to absence,
  grading policy, and rules of operation and conduct; and
                     (B)  provide to the driving safety school the
  department's name, mailing address, telephone number, and Internet
  website address for the purpose of directing complaints to the
  department;
               (4)  a copy of the information provided to each driving
  safety school under Subdivision (3) will be provided to each
  student by the school before enrollment;
               (5)  not later than the 15th working day after the date
  a person successfully completes the course, the course provider
  will issue and deliver to the person by United States mail or
  commercial or electronic delivery a uniform certificate of course
  completion indicating the course name and successful completion;
               (6)  the course provider maintains adequate records as
  prescribed by the department to show attendance and progress or
  grades and enforces satisfactory standards relating to attendance,
  progress, and conduct;
               (7)  the course provider complies with all county,
  municipal, state, and federal laws, including assumed name
  registration and other applicable requirements;
               (8)  the course provider is financially sound and
  capable of fulfilling its commitments for training;
               (9)  [the course provider is of good reputation and
  character;
               [(10)]  the course provider maintains and publishes as
  a part of its student enrollment contract the proper policy for the
  refund of the unused portion of tuition, fees, and other charges if
  a student fails to take the course or withdraws or is discontinued
  from the school at any time before completion;
               (10) [(11)]  the course provider does not use erroneous
  or misleading advertising, either by actual statement, omission, or
  intimation, as determined by the department;
               (11) [(12)]  the course provider does not use a name
  similar to the name of another existing school or tax-supported
  educational institution in this state, unless specifically
  approved in writing by the executive director;
               (12) [(13)]  the course provider does not owe an
  administrative penalty for a violation of this chapter; and
               (13) [(14)]  the course provider meets additional
  criteria required by the department.
         SECTION 8.  Section 1001.209(a), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (a)  Before a license [course provider] may be issued to a
  course provider [a license], the course provider must provide a
  corporate surety bond in the amount of $10,000 [$25,000].
         SECTION 9.  Section 1001.304(a), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (a)  An application to renew a driver education instructor or
  driving safety instructor license must include evidence of
  completion of continuing education [and be postmarked at least 30
  days before the expiration date of the license].
         SECTION 10.  Section 1001.351(a), Education Code, is amended
  to read as follows:
         (a)  Not later than the 15th working day after the course
  completion date, a course provider or a person at the course
  provider's facilities shall issue and deliver by United States mail
  or commercial or electronic delivery a uniform certificate of
  course completion to a person who successfully completes an
  approved driving safety course.
         SECTION 11.  Section 521.205(a), Transportation Code, as
  amended by Chapter 567 (H.B. 2708), Acts of the 84th Legislature,
  Regular Session, 2015, is repealed.
         SECTION 12.  This Act takes effect immediately if it
  receives a vote of two-thirds of all the members elected to each
  house, as provided by Section 39, Article III, Texas Constitution.  
  If this Act does not receive the vote necessary for immediate
  effect, this Act takes effect September 1, 2017.
 
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