It is the policy of the Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board (TSSWCB) to courteously receive and to investigate complaints, pursuant to §201.0231, Texas Agriculture Code, concerning its policies, programs, services, employees and issues concerning local soil and water conservation districts.
Water Quality Complaints
The TSSWCB is responsible for investigating and resolving water quality complaints resulting from agricultural or silvicultural (forestry) nonpoint sources. If you wish to report a water quality complaint, please contact the appropriate TSSWCB Regional Office.
Complaints Against an Employee, Policy, Program or Service
Any person expressing a desire to file a complaint against a TSSWCB employee or concerning a TSSWCB policy, program, or service should submit a written complaint to the agency designated Complaint Coordinator named below. Any person expressing a desire to file a complaint concerning a local soil and water conservation district should first attempt to have the concern addressed on the local level by the district. Local district addresses are available on the TSSWCB website or you may call this office at 254.773.2250.
Complainants are urged to type or legibly write complaints with as much detail as possible regarding the issue or action that is the basis of the complaint, including specific reference to the time, date and place and reference to any policy, rule, law, or regulation that may have been violated. Those complainants who wish to provide oral complaints will have their complaints recorded on paper and will be requested to provide appropriate details.
Any written complaint received from a non-employee by any TSSWCB employee will be referred directly to the designated Complaint Coordinator. Any employee of the TSSWCB that desires to file a complaint must follow the procedures contained in their Policies and Procedures Manual.
A person refusing to make a written complaint or who makes an anonymous complaint does not necessarily prevent an investigation from being initiated on the facts provided but does cause the matter to be more difficult to process to an effective conclusion. Persons making anonymous complaints will not receive automated responses concerning the status or disposition of a complaint.
Pursuant to §201.0231, Texas Agriculture Code, the TSSWCB will maintain a complaint log to track the filing and disposition of complaints. The complainant and any involved employee or involved district will be given written notification of the outcome of the investigation. If the process is not complete within 90 days, a status notification will be sent to both the complainant and involved employee or district quarterly until the case is closed.
The designated Complaint Coordinator will work with the Human Resources Coordinator and the Executive Director to review all allegations directly involving employees and districts. Complaints involving policies, programs, and services will be coordinated with appropriate departments and/or the State Board. The designated Complaint Coordinator will normally conduct complaint investigations. If warranted, the Executive Director may determine when it is in the best interest of TSSWCB for other parties, internally or externally, to conduct an investigation involving a complaint.
All complaints of employee or district misconduct will be courteously received and carefully evaluated to determine whether the allegations are valid or invalid and determine the appropriate response.
Whenever a complainant or other involved party deliberately gives false information in the complaint or during the course of a complaint investigation or other inquiry, this information will be presented to the Executive Director who will evaluate the information presented and make the appropriate decision concerning the response including presentation of the case to the appropriate prosecutor under the appropriate Texas statutes.
A complainant, who expresses the desire to withdraw the complaint, specifically saying they have no desire to pursue the complaint further, will be requested to make the request in writing. When a complaint has been withdrawn the designated Complaint Coordinator, after consultation with the Executive Director, shall determine whether the investigation should continue.
All complaints and related documents may be subject to the Texas Public Information Act.
How to File a Complaint
- Complaints should be submitted in writing to the TSSWCB. All complaints will be investigated pursuant to §201.0231, Texas Agriculture Code.
- Provide as much detail as possible concerning the complaint.
- Type or legibly write, in a narrative form, a concise statement of the nature of the complaint, including all relevant facts. The more information you can provide, the better it is for following up on the complaint. If known, provide the name of all TSSWCB employees or the local district involved with your complaint or give sufficient information to allow the agency to identify employee(s) or the district.
- After you have completed the narrative portion of the complaint, please sign it and include you address and telephone number so that we may follow up with you.
- Your written complaint may be filed by mail, e-mail, fax or in person. Oral complaints may be given by phone or in person.
- All complaints and related documents may be subject to the Texas Open Records Act.
You may contact the designated Complaint Coordinator at:
Texas State Soil and Water Conservation Board
1497 Country View Lane
Temple, TX 76504
Phone: (254) 773-2250 ext. 227
Fax: (254) 773.3311
dheitman [at] tsswcb [dot] texas [dot] gov