Our Policy and Procedures Regarding Public Information
The Public Information Act
Under Texas law, each person is entitled to complete information about the affairs of government and the official acts of public officials and employees at all times, unless otherwise expressly provided by law.
The TCEQ is committed to upholding the Public Information Act (PIA) and to ensuring public access to its records. All agency staff are obligated to abide by the TCEQ's Operating Policy and Procedure (Requests for Public Information ) regarding requests for information under the Texas Public Information Act.
Exceptions to the Public Information Act
All TCEQ records are available for public view unless one of the exceptions to disclosure listed in the Public Information Act applies. Subchapter C of the Texas Government Code, Chapter 552 - Public Information, lists the exceptions. Some types of information that may be kept confidential include:
- private, personal information such as certain financial, identity-related, or medical information;
- certain law enforcement information and the identity of informers;
- some information related to anticipated or pending litigation; and
- home addresses and phone numbers of government officials or employees.
TCEQ Public Information Act Request Procedures
Our Operating Policy and Procedure (Requests for Public Information) defines the procedure.
If a customer wants their request to be handled under the provisions of the Public Information Act, the request must be submitted in writing. If the TCEQ wishes or is required to withhold public information, state law requires the agency to seek a ruling from the attorney general within ten business days of receipt of the written request. In addition, if the agency cannot produce the requested public information within ten business days, the agency must respond in writing to the requestor stating that fact and setting a reasonable time when the information will be available for inspection or duplication.
TCEQ Public Information Officer
The executive director of the TCEQ, as the chief administrative officer for the agency, is the public information officer (PIO). The executive director has designated the Information Resources Division assistant director to act on his behalf as public information officer.
Duties of the public information officer include:
- Making public information available for public inspection and copying;
- Protecting public information from deterioration, alteration, mutilation, loss, or unlawful removal;
- Repairing, renovating, or rebinding public information as necessary to maintain it properly; and
- Providing certification of TCEQ documents as true agency records.