Making sure your house is wired but your electrician isn’t

25 07 2010

Should the state renew the license of an electrician who has been caught stealing copper wire to support his methamphetamine habit? Maybe so, according to the recent decision of an Administrative Law Judge.

Caught stealing three times

The electrician pled guilty to stealing wire from lampposts in August and September 2008. He also pled guilty to breaking into a locked storage shed to steal a bicycle in January 2009.

Supporting a meth habit

When the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation learned about his crimes, it tried to revoke his professional license to work as an electrician in Texas. He requested a hearing at the State Office of Administrative Hearings. At that hearing, he admitted that he was not working at the time of the thefts because he was abusing methamphatemine and, therefore, could not keep a steady job.

But he is no threat to public safety now

But he also explained that he had entered, and still resided in, a drug treatment facility and he claimed that he had not abused methamphetamine in more than a year.

The judge considered the electrician’s testimony along with favorable testimony and letters from his chemical dependency counselor and others who know him. She concluded that the electrician has rehabilitated in the 18-month period since the thefts and no longer is a threat to public safety. Therefore, she recommended that he be allowed to retain his license.

But the TDLR has the last word.  And as of the date of this posting, TDLR records show that the electrician’s license has expired and has not been renewed.

For more information about the case, go to SOAH’s website at and see the Proposal for Decision in SOAH Docket No. 452-10-1268.ELC.

— D. Swanson




2 responses

25 07 2010
Brad Closson

Great use of “real” issues to get your point across. Like the picture as well. Very creative. Keep them coming.

27 07 2010


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