The Texas On-Site Wastewater Association is dedicated to protecting public health, public safety and environmental health, environmental safety. We continue to actively promote bills that protect public waters of Texas, as well as watch for and oppose bills with the potential to threaten surface waters and ground waters of Texas.
“On-Site Sewage Facilities” properly installed, operated and maintained in Texas protect our finite water supply. If left unattended, improperly regulated or unregulated “On-Site Sewage Facilities” have the potential to contaminate these waters. TOWA’s legislative goal is to educate and advise our legislatures on practical and economical laws to achieve safe, environmentally friendly treatment of domestic sewage on residential and commercial properties of Texas. Although we are not a political action committee or PAC, our volunteer board of directors and members are working to educate our legislatures on protecting the public waters of Texas.
Our States “Regular Session of the 85th Legislature” started January 10th and ended May 29, 2017. It was exciting yet exhausting for all that took part in this great endeavor!
TOWA’s Legislative day on February 15, 2017 was a huge success meeting with several legislatures and many staff members that day.
Thirteen of TOWA’s fifteen Board of Directors, one TOWA member and TOWA’s Executive Director are seen in the photo above on “Legislative Day” we had one other instrumental young man in our group that day, he is taking the photo.
Top row left to right – Brian Wakefield, Wade Cloud, Frank Aguirre, Patrick Kern & Jacob Young.
Middle row left to right – Dixon Dryden, Sissy Bob, Ron Suchecki & Jim Prochaska.
Bottom row left to right – Wendell Baker, Randi Weber, Wiley Cloud, Ron Moomaw, Richard Erwin & Randy Chelette.
Our large group broke into four smaller groups when we arrived at the Capital, by noon we had visited most of the representatives, their chief of staff or environmental staff personnel. That afternoon we rapped things up visiting a few more representatives and Senators staff members. Our main goal that day was to just get reconnected with our legislatures.
Wiley Cloud did all the prep work to make this legislative day so successful. He had visited Representative Lyle Larson at his local office and was offered to host a meet n greet reception the evening of our legislative day. it worked out great! We had invited staffers all day long to come visit and relax have a drink eat and get to know more about TOWA.
The above photo is from the TOWA legislative day meet and greet that allowed us to visit staff for a longer period and discuss issues that concern TOWA. Representative Larson was able to meet most of the board members and get a better understanding of who we represent.
The photo above is also from our 2017 legislative day of TOWA’s president Wendell Baker visiting with a group of staff members explaining just who TOWA represents and how important our industries role is in protecting the waters of Texas.
During our legislative day Brian Wakefield mentioned to one of the young staff members our concern of the $10.00 permit fee still being collect by TCEQ from Authorized Agents and not being used for the legislation mandated for which it is collected. This started a discussion that quickly took off to create a Bill with TOWA’s input.
HB 2771 Was filed on March 2, 2017 Authored By: Honorable Representative Dade Phelan and Sponsored by Honorable Senator Robert Nichols.
HB 2771 PASSED and will become effective September 1,2017.
Legislative Actions on HB 2771 are Below: (descending date order)
We continued working the entire length of this session with our legislatures. Several of us went to the hearings, Wiley Cloud our Legislative Chair and Randy Chelette our Executive Director stayed in almost constant communication with legislative staff through this long list of actions to see HB 2771 amended, pass the House amended again pass Senate and sent to the Governor.
This bill essentially requires the funds collected for on-site wastewater treatment and reuse research to be spent on what they were originally collected for. For more information on the final bill see below:
The TOWA Board appreciates all of our members support. Together we can and will continue to make a positive impact on our states most precious resource.
If you are a member of TOWA or thinking of joining and have any questions or would like to participate in future legislative activities please contact our legislative chair.