Texas Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted Tuesday, and it began in all capital letters: “TEXAS PLUMBERS: We’ve got this.” If that conjures an image of the governor racing off with a wrench in hand to rescue Texas plumbers, that’s likely intentional. But what’s he rescuing them from? And can he fix this particular flap?
The State Board of Plumbing Examiners is set to close down soon because lawmakers didn’t pass legislation during the recent session to keep the board intact. It means that all current plumbing licenses will expire.
Asa Womack is master a plumber from Princeton, Texas, who helped start the committee, and Twitter hashtag, 71KPLUMBSTRONG, and is also helping plan a rally of plumbers at the Texas capitol later this month. The plumbers want a special legislative session to renew their licenses — something Abbott has opposed.
Plumbers say the loss of the state board puts consumers’ and plumbers’ safety at risk.
“Our biggest concern is if you don’t have the regulation, you could have anybody out there working on the med-gas system that’s in your hospitals, that’s in your dentist office,” Womack says. “The work I’ve seen from people that aren’t qualified or trained properly or licensed, for that matter, have done some pretty shady work that could get some people killed.”
What you’ll hear in this segment:
– Why Texas plumbers are concerned about the deregulation of their profession
– Why the Texas Legislature decided to let the State Board of Plumbing Examiners close
– What Womack hopes to achieve with the rally
Written by Marina Marquez.