TITLE 25. HEALTH SERVICES

PART 1. DEPARTMENT OF STATE HEALTH SERVICES

CHAPTER 229. FOOD AND DRUG

SUBCHAPTER EE. COTTAGE FOOD PRODUCTION OPERATION

25 TAC §229.661

The Executive Commissioner of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC), on behalf of the Department of State Health Services (DSHS), proposes an amendment to §229.661, concerning Cottage Food Production Operations.

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE

The proposed amendment to §229.661 complies with Senate Bill (S.B.) 572, 86th Legislature, Regular Session, 2019, which amended Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 437, relating to Cottage Food Production Operations. The legislation expands and clarifies the list of foods allowable as cottage food products to include frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables, pickled fruit or vegetables, fermented vegetable products, plant-based acidified canned foods, and any other food that is not a time and temperature control for safety food. The legislation sets forth specific requirements for cottage foods production of fermented and acidified canned foods and requirements for DSHS to implement procedures for recipe source approval and to maintain lists of laboratories and process authorities on DSHS' website. The legislation expands the methods by which cottage food products may be marketed and sold through the internet and by mail-order.

SECTION-BY-SECTION SUMMARY

The proposed amendment to §229.661(b) updates and adds definitions as a result of S.B. 572. New definitions include "acidified canned goods," "fermented vegetable product," and "process authority." The definition for "cottage food production operation" expands the list of foods that can be produced by adding pickled fruit or vegetables, plant-based acidified canned goods, fermented vegetable products, frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables, and any other food that is not a time and temperature control for safety food. The amendment replaces "potentially hazardous food" with "time and temperature control for safety food (TCS food)" throughout the section, updates the definition for "farmers' market" and removes language limiting the places where the exchange between the cottage food production operation (operator) and consumer occurs. The subsection is renumbered to account for the addition of definitions.

The proposed amendment to §229.661(d), concerning packaging and labeling requirements for cottage food production operations, adds fish or shellfish to be included on the label as a disclosure of major food allergens, adds language regarding the sale of frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables and advertising media for cottage food products.

The proposed amendment to §229.661(e), concerning certain prohibited or restricted sales by cottage food production operations, removes the previous restriction on the sale of cottage food products through the internet or by mail-order and adds the requirements for selling cottage food products by these methods.

The proposed amendment §229.661(f), concerning requirements for the sale of certain cottage food products, outlines the requirements for the production, labeling, recordkeeping, and sale of pickled fruit or vegetables, fermented vegetable products, and plant-based acidified canned foods in a cottage food production operation. The proposed amendment adds procedures for recipe source approval and requires DSHS to maintain a list of web-based resources for operators who want to produce fermented and acidified canned foods on DSHS' website.

The proposed amendment to §229.661(g), concerning requirements for the sale of frozen fruit or vegetables, describes the storage, delivery, and labeling of the frozen fruit or vegetables.

The proposed amendments to §299.661(f) through (h) are renumbered as subsections (h) though (j) due to the new subsections.

FISCAL NOTE

Donna Sheppard, Chief Financial Officer, has determined that for each year of the first five years that the rule will be in effect, enforcing or administering the rule does not have foreseeable implications relating to costs or revenues of state or local governments.

GOVERNMENT GROWTH IMPACT STATEMENT

DSHS has determined that during the first five years that the rule will be in effect:

(1) the proposed rule will not create or eliminate a government program;

(2) implementation of the proposed rule will not affect the number of DSHS employee positions;

(3) implementation of the proposed rule will result in no assumed change in future legislative appropriations;

(4) the proposed rule will not affect fees paid to DSHS;

(5) the proposed rule will not create a new rule;

(6) the proposed rule will expand the existing rule;

(7) the proposed rule will not change the number of individuals subject to the rule; and

(8) the proposed rule will positively affect the local economy.

SMALL BUSINESS, MICRO-BUSINESS, AND RURAL COMMUNITY IMPACT ANALYSIS

Donna Sheppard has also determined that it cannot be determined if there is an adverse economic effect on small businesses, micro-businesses, or rural communities, because there is no license or permit required for cottage food production operations. DSHS does not have a mechanism to count how many cottage food production operations are active in the state. The amended rule represents a significant expansion of foods that may be produced by cottage food production operations to include both fermented and acidified canned foods; and the means by which those foods may be marketed to include internet and mail-order sales. The rule expands economic opportunity for businesses in the state of Texas.

LOCAL EMPLOYMENT IMPACT

The proposed rule will not affect a local economy.

COSTS TO REGULATED PERSONS

Texas Government Code, §2001.0045 does not apply to this rule because the rule is necessary to protect the health, safety, and welfare of the residents of Texas; and the rule is necessary to implement legislation that does not specially state that §2001.0045 applies to the rule.

PUBLIC BENEFIT AND COSTS

Stephen Pahl, Associate Commissioner, Consumer Protection Division, has determined that for each year of the first five years the rule is in effect, the public benefit will be the increased opportunity for business owners who are cottage food production operations. Businesses will benefit due to the expanded list of foods that can be produced to include frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables, pickled fruit or vegetables, and fermented and acidified canned foods, and the permission for mail-order and internet sales. DSHS will maintain a list of web-based resources on DSHS' website for operators who want to produce fermented and acidified canned foods.

Donna Shepperd has also determined that for the first five years the rule is in effect, persons who are required to comply with the proposed rule may incur economic costs because of requirements in the rule for operators of fermented and acidified foods. The amended rule will require operators to follow one of the following three options: to utilize approved recipe sources for processing their food products; to have the products evaluated by an approved process authority; or to have the products tested at a certified commercial laboratory. If an operator produces fermented or acidified foods chooses not to use pre-approved recipes, there will be "up-front" costs in evaluation of recipes by process authorities or determination of end-product equilibrium pH by certified laboratories. Costs will depend on the number of recipes tested or the amount of experimentation required to achieve a recipe that produces a safe product. Evaluation of an acidified product by a process authority can cost $75.00 per product. Testing for equilibrium pH can cost $100.00 per product. These alternate steps (product evaluation or product testing) are considered necessary to ensure the safety of consumers due to the risk of botulism toxin forming in the anaerobic environment of shelf-stable canned foods. It is assumed that these production costs will be recouped in the retail cost paid by consumers. The amended rule will require DSHS to maintain current lists of approved sources of recipes, qualified process authorities, and certified laboratories on DSHS' website.

TAKINGS IMPACT ASSESSMENT

DSHS has determined that the proposal does not restrict or limit an owner's right to his or her property that would otherwise exist in the absence of government action and, therefore, does not constitute a taking under Texas Government Code, §2007.043.

PUBLIC COMMENT

Questions about the content of this proposal may be directed to Joe Williams, R.S. at (512) 231-5653 in DSHS Public Sanitation and Retail Food Safety Unit.

Written comments on the proposal may be submitted to Joe Williams, R.S., Manager, DSHS Public Sanitation and Retail Food Safety Unit, at Public Sanitation and Retail Food Safety Unit MC 1987, Texas Department of State Health Services, P.O. Box 149347, Austin, Texas 78714-9347, or by email to foodestablishments@dshs.texas.gov.

To be considered, comments must be submitted no later than 31 days after the date of this issue of the Texas Register. Comments must be: (1) postmarked or shipped before the last day of the comment period; (2) hand-delivered at 8407 Wall Street, Austin, Texas 78754 before 5:00 p.m. on the last working day of the comment period; or (3) emailed before midnight on the last day of the comment period. If last day to submit comments falls on a holiday, comments must be postmarked, shipped, or emailed before midnight on the following business day to be accepted. When emailing comments, please indicate "Comments on Proposed Rule 19R077" in the subject line.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY

The amendment is authorized by Texas Health and Safety Code, §437.0056, which provides that the Executive Commissioner of HHSC may adopt rules for the efficient enforcement of Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 437; and Texas Health and Safety Code, §1001.075, which provides that the Executive Commissioner of HHSC shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of health and human services by DSHS and for the administration of Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapter 1001.

The amendment implements Texas Government Code, §531.0055 and Texas Health and Safety Code, Chapters 437 and 1001.

§229.661.Cottage Food Production Operations.

(a) Purpose. The purpose of this section is to implement Health and Safety Code, Chapter 437, related to cottage food production operations, which requires the department to adopt rules for labeling and production of foods [produced] by cottage food production operations.

(b) Definitions. The following words and terms when used in this subchapter shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise.

(1) Acidified canned goods--Food with a finished equilibrium pH value of 4.6 or less that is thermally processed before being placed in an airtight container.

(2) [(1)] Baked good--A food item prepared by baking the item in an oven, which includes cookies, cakes, breads, Danishes, donuts, pastries, pies, and other items that are prepared by baking.

(3) [(2)] Cottage food production operation (operator)--An individual, operating out of the individual's home, who:

(A) produces at the individual's home:

(i) a baked good that is not a time and temperature control for safety food (TCS food) [potentially hazardous food], as defined in paragraph (14) [(11)] of this subsection:

(ii) candy;

(iii) coated and uncoated nuts;

(iv) unroasted nut butters;

(v) fruit butters;

(vi) a canned jam or jelly;

(vii) a fruit pie;

(viii) dehydrated fruit or vegetables, including dried beans;

(ix) popcorn and popcorn snacks;

(x) cereal, including granola;

(xi) dry mix;

(xii) vinegar;

(xiii) pickled fruit or vegetables, including beets and carrots, that are preserved in vinegar, brine, or a similar solution at an equilibrium pH value of 4.6 or less; [pickles, as defined in paragraph (10) of this subsection;]

(xiv) mustard;

(xv) roasted coffee or dry tea; [or]

(xvi) a dried herb or dried-herb mix;

(xvii) plant-based acidified canned goods;

(xviii) fermented vegetable products, including products that are refrigerated to preserve quality;

(xix) frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables; or

(xx) any other food that is not a TCS food, as defined in paragraph (14) of this subsection.

(B) has an annual gross income of $50,000 or less from the sale of food described by subparagraph (A) of this paragraph;

(C) sells foods produced under subparagraph (A) of this paragraph only directly to consumers [at the individual's home; a farmers' market; a farm stand; a municipal, fair, festival, or event; a county fair, festival, or event; or a nonprofit fair, festival, or event]; and

(D) delivers products to the consumer at the point of sale or another location designated by the consumer.

(4) [(3)] Department--The Department of State Health Services.

(5) [(4)] Executive Commissioner--The Executive Commissioner of the Health and Human Services Commission.

(6) [(5)] Farm stand--A premises owned and operated by a producer of agricultural food products at which the producer or other persons may offer for sale produce or foods described in paragraph (3)[(2)] of this subsection.

(7) [(6)] Farmers' market--A designated location typically used [primarily] for the [distribution and] sale [directly to consumers] of food by farmers or other vendors [producers].

(8) Fermented vegetable product--A low-acid vegetable food product subjected to the action of certain microorganisms that produce acid during their growth and reduce the pH value of the food to 4.6 or less.

(9) [(7)] Food establishment--

(A) Food establishment means an operation that stores, prepares, packages, serves, vends, or otherwise provides food for human consumption:

(i) such as a restaurant; retail food store; satellite or catered feeding location; catering operation if the operation provides food directly to a consumer or to a conveyance used to transport people; market; vending location; conveyance used to transport people; institution; or food bank; and

(ii) that relinquishes possession of food to a consumer directly, or indirectly through a delivery service such as home delivery of grocery orders or restaurant takeout orders, or delivery service that is provided by common carriers.

(B) Food establishment includes:

(i) an element of the operation such as a transportation vehicle or a central preparation facility that supplies a vending location or satellite feeding location unless the vending or feeding location is permitted by the regulatory authority; and

(ii) an operation that is conducted in a mobile, stationary, temporary, or permanent facility or location; where consumption is on or off the premises; and regardless of whether there is a charge for the food.

(C) Food establishment does not include:

(i) an establishment that offers only prepackaged foods that are not TCS [potentially hazardous (time/temperature control for safety)] foods;

(ii) a produce stand that only offers whole, uncut fresh fruits and vegetables;

(iii) a food processing plant including those that are located on the premises of a food establishment;

(iv) a kitchen in a private home if only food that is not TCS [potentially hazardous (time/temperature control for safety)] food is prepared for sale or service at a function such as a religious or charitable organization's bake sale if allowed by law;

(v) an area where food that is prepared as specified in clause (iv) of this subparagraph is sold or offered for human consumption;

(vi) a Bed and Breakfast Limited establishment as defined in §228.2 of this title (relating to Definitions) concerning food establishments;

(vii) a private home that receives catered or home-delivered food; or

(viii) a cottage food production operation.

(10) [(8)] Herbs--The [Herbs are from the] leafy green parts of a plant (either fresh or dried) used for culinary purposes and not for medicinal uses.

(11) [(9)] Home--A primary residence that contains a kitchen and appliances designed for common residential usage.

[(10) Pickle--A cucumber preserved in vinegar, brine, or similar solution, and excluding all other pickled vegetables.]

(12) Process authority--A person who has expert knowledge acquired through appropriate training and experience in the pickling, fermenting, or acidification and processing of pickled, fermented, or acidified foods.

(13) [(11)] Time and temperature control for safety food (TCS food) [Potentially hazardous food (PHF)]--A food that requires time and temperature control for safety to limit pathogen growth or toxin production. The term includes a food that must be held under proper temperature controls, such as refrigeration, to prevent the growth of bacteria that may cause human illness. A TCS [potentially hazardous] food may include a food that contains protein and moisture and is neutral or slightly acidic, such as meat, poultry, fish, and shellfish products, pasteurized and unpasteurized milk and dairy products, raw seed sprouts, baked goods that require refrigeration, including cream or custard pies or cakes, and ice products. The term does not include a food that uses TCS [potentially hazardous] food as ingredients if the final food product does not require time or temperature control for safety to limit pathogen growth or toxin production.

(c) Complaints. The department shall maintain a record of a complaint made by a person against an operator [a cottage food production operation].

(d) Packaging and labeling requirements for cottage food production operations. All foods prepared by an operator [a cottage food production operation] shall be packaged and labeled in a manner that prevents product contamination.

(1) The label information shall include:

(A) the name and physical address of the cottage food production operation;

(B) the common or usual name of the product;

(C) disclosure of any [if a food is made with a] major food allergens [allergen], such as eggs, nuts, soy, peanuts, milk, [or] wheat, fish, or shellfish used in the product [that ingredient must be listed on the label]; and

(D) the following statement: "This food is made in a home kitchen and is not inspected by the Department of State Health Services or a local health department."

(2) Labels must be legible.

(3) A food item is not required to be packaged if it is too large or bulky for conventional packaging. For these food items, the information required under paragraph (1) of this subsection shall be provided to the consumer on an invoice or receipt.

(4) A label for frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables must include the following statement in at least 12-point font when sold: "SAFE HANDLING INSTRUCTIONS: To prevent illness from bacteria, keep this food frozen until preparing for consumption" on the label or on an invoice or receipt provided with the frozen fruit or vegetables.

(5) Advertising media of cottage food products for health, disease, or other claims must be consistent with those claims allowed by the Code of Federal Regulations Title 21, Part 101, Subparts D and E.

(e) Certain sales by cottage food production operations prohibited or restricted. [A cottage food production operation may not sell any of the foods described in this section through the Internet, by mail order, or at wholesale. No health claims may be made on any of the advertising media of the finished products because they are conventional foods.]

(1) An operator may not sell any of the foods described in this section at wholesale.

(2) An operator may sell a food described in this section in this state through the internet or by mail-order only if:

(A) the consumer purchases the food through the internet or by mail-order from the operator and the operator delivers the food to the consumer person-to-person; and

(B) subject to paragraph (3) of this subsection, before the operator accepts payment for the food, the operator provides all labeling information required by subsection (d) of this section to the consumer by:

(i) posting a legible statement on the cottage food production operation's internet website;

(ii) publishing the information in a catalog; or

(iii) otherwise communicating the information to the consumer.

(3) The operator that sells a food described by subsection (b)(3)(A) of this section in this state in the manner described by paragraph (2) of this subsection:

(A) is not required to include the address of the cottage food production operation in the labeling information required under subsection (d)(1)(A) of this section before the operator accepts payment for the food; and

(B) shall provide the address of the cottage food production operation on the label of the food in the manner required by subsection (d)(1)(A) of this section after the operator accepts payment for the food.

(f) Requirements for sale of certain cottage food products.

(1) An operator that sells to consumers pickled fruit or vegetables, fermented vegetable products, or plant-based acidified canned goods shall:

(A) use a recipe that:

(i) is from a source approved by the department under paragraph (4) of this subsection;

(ii) has been tested by an appropriately certified laboratory that confirmed the finished fruit or vegetable product, or plant-based acidified canned good has an equilibrium pH value of 4.6 or less; or

(iii) is approved by a qualified process authority; or

(B) if the operation does not use a recipe described by subparagraph (A) of this paragraph, test each batch of the recipe with a calibrated pH meter to confirm the finished fruit or vegetable, product, or plant-based acidified canned good has an equilibrium pH value of 4.6 or less.

(2) An operator may not sell to consumers pickled fruit or vegetables, fermented vegetable products, or plant-based acidified canned goods before the operator complies with paragraph (1) of this subsection.

(3) For each batch of pickled fruit or vegetables, fermented vegetable products, or plant-based acidified canned goods, an operator must:

(A) label the batch with a unique number; and

(B) for a period of at least 12 months, keep a record that includes:

(i) the batch number;

(ii) the recipe used by the producer;

(iii) the source of the recipe or testing results as applicable; and

(iv) the date the batch was prepared.

(4) The department shall:

(A) approve sources for recipes that an operator may use to produce pickled fruit or vegetables, fermented vegetable products, or plant-based acidified canned goods; and

(B) semiannually post on the department's internet website a list of the approved sources for recipes, appropriately certified laboratories, and qualified process authorities.

(5) This subsection does not apply to a pickled cucumber preserved in vinegar, brine, or similar solution.

(g) Requirements for the sale of frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables. An operator that sells to consumers frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables shall:

(1) store and deliver the frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables at an air temperature of not more than 32 degrees Fahrenheit; and

(2) label the frozen raw and uncut fruit or vegetables in accordance with subsection (d)(4) of this section.

(h) [(f)] A cottage food production operation is not exempt from meeting the application of Health and Safety Code, §431.045, Emergency Order; §431.0495, Recall Orders; and §431.247, Delegation of Powers or Duties. The department or local health authority may act to prevent an immediate and serious threat to human life or health.

(i) [(g)] Prohibition for Cottage Food Production Operations. A cottage food production operation may not sell TCS [potentially hazardous] foods to customers.

(j) [(h)] Production of Cottage Food Products - Basic Food Safety Education or Training Requirements.

(1) An individual who operates a cottage food production operation must have successfully completed a basic food safety education or training program for food handlers accredited under Health and Safety Code, Chapter 438, Subchapter D.

(2) An individual may not process, prepare, package, or handle cottage food products unless the individual:

(A) meets the requirements of paragraph (1) of this subsection;

(B) is directly supervised by an individual described by paragraph (1) of this subsection; or

(C) is a member of the household in which the cottage food products are produced.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on October 2, 2019.

TRD-201903579

Barbara L. Klein

General Counsel

Department of State Health Services

Earliest possible date of adoption: November 17, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 231-5653


CHAPTER 451. PEER ASSISTANCE

25 TAC §§451.101 - 451.112

The Executive Commissioner of the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) proposes the repeal of Texas Administrative Code (TAC), Title 25, Part 1, Chapter 451, Peer Assistance, in its entirety, including §451.101, concerning Authority; §451.102, concerning Program Purpose; §451.103, concerning Applicability; §451.104, concerning Relationship to Licensing/Disciplinary Authority; §451.105, concerning Program Requirements; §451.106, concerning Definitions; §451.107, concerning Organization; §451.108, concerning Staffing; §451.109, concerning Program Description; §451.110, concerning Policies and Procedures; §451.111, concerning Referrals to Assessment/Treatment Resources; and §451.112, concerning Certification.

BACKGROUND AND PURPOSE

The purpose of the proposal is to repeal 40 TAC Chapter 451, Peer Assistance, in its entirety. New rules in 26 TAC Chapter 8, Peer Assistance for Impaired Professionals, are published elsewhere in this issue of the Texas Register and are substantially similar as the rules proposed for repeal.

SECTION-BY-SECTION SUMMARY

The proposed repeal of §451.101, Authority, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.101.

The proposed repeal of §451.102, Program Purpose, allows this chapter to be proposed as new 26 TAC Chapter 8. The content of this rule is included in proposed new §8.105(8), the definition of "peer assistance program."

The proposed repeal of §451.103, Applicability, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.103.

The proposed repeal of §451.104, Relationship to Licensing/Disciplinary Authority, allows the content of the rule to be proposed within new 26 TAC §8.107.

The proposed repeal of §451.105, Program Requirements, allows the content of the rule to be proposed within new 26 TAC §8.115 and §8.121.

The proposed repeal of §451.106, Definitions, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.105.

The proposed repeal of §451.107, Organization, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.109.

The proposed repeal of §451.108, Staffing, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.111.

The proposed repeal of §451.109, Program Description, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.113.

The proposed repeal of §451.110, Policies and Procedures, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.115.

The proposed repeal of §451.111, Referrals to Assessment/Treatment Resources, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.119.

The proposed repeal of §451.112, Certification, allows the rule to be proposed as new 26 TAC §8.107(b).

FISCAL NOTE

Trey Wood, Chief Financial Officer, has determined that for each year of the first five years that the rules will be repealed, there are no foreseeable implications relating to costs or revenues of state or local governments.

GOVERNMENT GROWTH IMPACT STATEMENT

HHSC has determined that during the first five years that the rules will be repealed:

(1) the repealed rules will not create or eliminate a government program;

(2) the repealed rules will not affect the number of HHSC/DSHS employee positions;

(3) the repealed rules will result in no assumed change in future legislative appropriations;

(4) the repealed rules will not affect fees paid to HHSC;

(5) the repealed rules will not create a new rule;

(6) the proposed rulemaking will repeal existing rules;

(7) the repealed rules will not change the number of individuals subject to the rules; and

(8) the repealed rules will not affect the state's economy.

SMALL BUSINESS, MICRO-BUSINESS, AND RURAL COMMUNITY IMPACT ANALYSIS

Trey Wood has also determined that there will be no adverse economic effect on small businesses, micro-businesses, or rural communities. The proposed rules do not impose any additional costs on small businesses, micro-businesses, or rural communities that are required to comply with the rules.

LOCAL EMPLOYMENT IMPACT

The repealed rules will not affect a local economy.

COSTS TO REGULATED PERSONS

Texas Government Code §2001.0045 does not apply to these rules because the rules do not impose a cost on regulated persons.

PUBLIC BENEFIT AND COSTS

Sonja Gaines, Deputy Executive Commissioner, has determined that for each year of the first five years the rules are repealed, the public benefit will be better information on peer assistance program requirements, as the rules will be updated and located under the correct state agency in the Texas Administrative Code.

Trey Wood has also determined that for the first five years the rules are repealed, there are no anticipated economic costs to persons who are required to comply with the proposed rules.

TAKINGS IMPACT ASSESSMENT

HHSC has determined that the proposal does not restrict or limit an owner's right to his or her property that would otherwise exist in the absence of government action and, therefore, does not constitute a taking under Texas Government Code §2007.043.

PUBLIC COMMENT

Questions about the content of this proposal may be directed to Amy Chandler at (512) 487-3419.

Written comments on the proposal may be submitted to Rules Coordination Office, P.O. Box 13247, Mail Code 4102, Austin, Texas 78711-3247, or street address 4900 North Lamar Boulevard, Austin, Texas 78751; or e-mailed to HHSRulesCoordinationOffice@hhsc.state.tx.us.

To be considered, comments must be submitted no later than 31 days after the date of this issue of the Texas Register. Comments must be: (1) postmarked or shipped before the last day of the comment period; (2) hand-delivered before 5:00 p.m. on the last working day of the comment period; or (3) e-mailed before midnight on the last day of the comment period. If last day to submit comments falls on a holiday, comments must be postmarked, shipped, or emailed before midnight on the following business day to be accepted. When e-mailing comments, please indicate "Comments on Proposed Rule 19R046" in the subject line.

STATUTORY AUTHORITY

The repeals are authorized by Texas Government Code §531.0055, which provides that the Executive Commissioner of HHSC shall adopt rules for the operation and provision of services by the health and human services agencies.

The repeal affects Texas Government Code §531.0055 and Texas Health and Safety Code Chapter 467.

§451.101.Authority.

§451.102.Program Purpose.

§451.103.Applicability.

§451.104.Relationship to Licensing/Disciplinary Authority.

§451.105.Program Requirements.

§451.106.Definitions.

§451.107.Organization.

§451.108.Staffing.

§451.109.Program Description.

§451.110.Policies and Procedures.

§451.111.Referrals to Assessment/Treatment Resources.

§451.112.Certification.

The agency certifies that legal counsel has reviewed the proposal and found it to be within the state agency's legal authority to adopt.

Filed with the Office of the Secretary of State on October 2, 2019.

TRD-201903577

Karen Ray

Chief Counsel

Department of State Health Services

Earliest possible date of adoption: November 17, 2019

For further information, please call: (512) 487-3419