|(a) Each sanitarian registered by the department must meet the renewal requirements set out in this section. Registered sanitarians-in-training are not required to complete continuing education. (b) Each registered sanitarian must obtain and show proof of not less than 24 continuing education contact hours related to the fields of consumer health, environmental health or sanitation as defined in §140.102 of this title (relating to Definitions) taken within the 24 months preceding renewal for a registration issued for a two-year term. (c) Only the following continuing education activities shall serve as a basis for registration renewal: (1) approved by the department or its designee in accordance with this section; or (2) approved by another professional regulatory agency in the State of Texas as acceptable continuing education for registration renewal. (d) Only continuing education activities provided by one of the following types of sponsors shall be approved by the department in accordance with these rules: (1) a governmental agency; (2) an accredited college or university; (3) an association with a membership of 25 or more persons; or (4) a commercial education business. (e) Government agencies, non-profit organizations, and accredited colleges and universities are pre-approved as sponsors for continuing education when the activity is conducted or sponsored in compliance with these rules and is directly related to environmental health, consumer health, or sanitation. (f) Continuing education activities conducted by approved sponsors must meet the following criteria: (1) the activity must have significant educational or practical content to maintain appropriate levels of competency; (2) the activity must have a record keeping procedure provided by the sponsor which includes a register of who took the course and the number of continuing education units earned; (3) the sponsor must include procedures for verifying participant's attendance as well as comprehension of subject matter presented. These procedures may include, but are not limited to, examinations, post-activity questionnaires, field demonstrations, in-class workbooks or handout materials, and/or question and answer periods to assure participant understanding of the subject matter; (4) the activity must be at least 50 minutes in length of actual instruction time. Round table discussions and more than one speaker for the total of 50 minutes per activity is permissible. No credit will be given for time used to promote the sponsor or other nonrelevant activities; and (5) the sponsor must ensure the activity complies with all applicable federal and state laws, including the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements for access to activities. (g) Acceptable continuing education activities include the following: (1) conferences; (2) home-study training modules (including professional journals requiring successful completion of a test document); (3) lectures; (4) panel discussions; (5) seminars; (6) accredited college or university courses; (7) video or film presentations with live instruction; (8) field demonstrations; (9) teleconferences; (10) computer based training; or (11) other activities approved by the department. (h) Continuing education instructors must have one of the following credentials or hold one of the following positions: (1) certification as a registered sanitarian by the department; (2) instructor at the Texas Engineering Extension Service; (3) faculty member at an accredited college or university; (4) employee of the department; or (5) teaching or work experience determined by the sponsor to be sufficient. (i) To obtain department approval to provide approved continuing education, the sponsor must submit: (1) a completed application on department forms; (2) the fee prescribed in §140.103(b)(8) of this title (relating to Fees); and (3) any additional information or material requested by the department. (j) The application and information must be submitted to the department at least 60 days in advance of the first date on which the sponsor plans to provide continuing education activities. (k) The department shall approve, reject, or request additional information within 30 days of receipt of the application. (l) Each approved continuing education sponsor shall be sanctioned for one year from date of approval. Sponsors who wish to continue approval should submit a sponsor approval form and fee as prescribed in §140.103(b)(8) of this title at least 30 days prior to the end of the one-year period. (m) Sponsors of approved continuing education activities shall: (1) at the conclusion of the activity distribute to those registered sanitarians who have successfully completed the activity a certificate of completion which shall include the name of the sponsor, the date and name of the activity, and the continuing education units earned; and (2) maintain a copy of the register for two years and provide it to the department upon request. (n) Each registered sanitarian shall collect and keep certificates of completion from all courses completed. These certificates of completion will be used to document a registered sanitarian's attendance at approved courses. Transcripts showing coursework in environmental or consumer health from an accredited college or university, or written verification of hours approved by the National Environmental Health Association (NEHA) will also be accepted. The department will conduct random audits for compliance with this requirement. (o) The department may deny, revoke, or refuse to renew approval if the sponsor fails to maintain or provide records related to the provision of continuing education to the department, or fails to comply with any other requirements that are a basis for approval or that are a part of this subchapter. (p) A registered sanitarian or sponsor may file a written request for an extension of time for compliance with any deadline in this subsection. Such request for extension, not to exceed 90 days, shall be granted by the department if the registered sanitarian or sponsor files appropriate documentation to show good cause for failure to comply timely with the requirements of this subsection. Good cause includes, but is not limited to, extended illness, extended medical disability, or other extraordinary hardship which is beyond the control of the person seeking the extension.