The Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) is the environmental agency for the State of Texas. TCEQ’s mission is to protect the state’s public health and natural resources consistent with sustainable economic development. To accomplish this mission, TCEQ strives to ensure that regulations are necessary, effective and current and apply regulations clearly and consistently across the state.
In order to make sure their rulemaking processes meet the agency’s overarching mission, TCEQ was looking to find an innovative technology solution to modernize this critical work. This led to a partnership with Esper—a leading provider of cloud-based policy management software.
TCEQ will be launching Esper to automate the agency’s primary rulemaking workflow, provide configurable rulemaking document templates, promote better internal collaboration with robust policy drafting tools, streamline federal and state regulatory research and provide project management tools to ensure rulemaking projects are completed on time.
Configurable rulemaking workflow
TCEQ needed a partner to digitize their primary rulemaking workflow, which consists of nine different stages with various review and approval tasks.
Esper will be automating this workflow for the agency, ensuring that the roughly 30 agency staff responsible are notified when they’re required to comment, review or approve a rulemaking. TCEQ’s rulemaking stakeholders can then mark their work as completed, moving the project to the next stage.
User permissions will also be configurable, depending on the level of work of each user. TCEQ will also have the ability to edit these permissions by an administrator.
Rulemaking document templates
Esper will be adding 11 configurable rulemaking document templates for TCEQ staff to work off of. These templates are built directly into the workflow, so when a new rulemaking project is created all required documents will populate.
Every document required for a rulemaking—from proposal to adoption—is configurable, including the agency’s Concept Memo all the way through their Adoption Order.
Esper’s robust document drafting tool allows stakeholders to collaborate on these documents in real-time, leave comments and approve completed sections. Since Esper’s policy management solution is cloud-based, multiple staff members can work on a document at the same time. Esper also keeps track of all version histories right in the software, allowing TCEQ to house institutional knowledge in one place.
Key operational insights for TCEQ
Esper is able to visualize all current and historical rulemaking work for TCEQ. This ensures agency leadership can quickly review the status of an ongoing rulemaking, review historical rulemakings and analyze key insights on all of their regulations—including average reading level, average length and if there are any repealed references in their regulations.
A trusted partner to the State of Texas
TCEQ joins two other Texas state agencies that are leveraging Esper’s policy management solution.
The Texas Department of Agriculture and Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission are using Esper to:
- Stay ahead of five-year rule audits from the Texas Sunset Commission
- Collaborate on all rulemaking documents
- Identify target policies for review or repeal
- Consolidate regulatory policy research into a single source of truth
- Eliminate version control issues
- Gain greater operational insights
- House institutional knowledge
To learn more about Esper’s policy management software, you can view more of our customer success stories.