Laws Concerning Carrying Concealed Firearms on Campus in Texas

According to the Texas Penal Code (Tex. Penal Code § 46.03(a) and Tex. Penal Code § 46.03(f) an individuals are prohibited from intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly possessing or going with a firearm on the physical premises of a school or educational institution, any grounds or building on which an activity sponsored by a school or educational institution is being conducted, or in a passenger transportation vehicle of a school or educational institution, whether the school or educational institution is public or private, unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization of the institution. Concealed weapons permit holders are subject to this prohibition with the following exceptions.

#1 NOTE – NEW LAW TAKES EFFECT IN 2016/2017 AS NOTED BELOW

Effective Dates:  August 1, 2016 for all state 4-year colleges and universities; August 1, 2017 for all state 2-year and junior colleges.

The new Texas law will permit individuals who have obtained a concealed handgun license (CHL) to carry their loaded, concealed weapon in college and university buildings.  Each college and university may determine certain sensitive areas and buildings* where concealed weapons will continue to be prohibited. Each college and university must publically display campus policies on the official school website, as well as widely publicizing it among correspondence with the institution’s faculty, staff, and students. Previous laws permitting the concealed carry with a license on open campus grounds and in locked vehicles in parking lots will remain unchanged (see note 2 below).

*The sensitive areas will first be determined by the institution and will include representatives from the student body, faculty, and staff. Once the sensitive areas are approved by this committee, they will be sent to the Board of Regents for a 2/3 vote for approval.

Link to law: http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/tlodocs/84R/billtext/pdf/SB00011F.pdf#navpanes=0

#2 NOTE – EXCEPTION FOR GUNS IN VEHICLES (this exception remains in place with respect to new law taking effect in 2016/2017)

On June 14, 2013, Governor Perry signed into law SB 1907, which states that an institution of higher education or private or independent institution of higher education may not adopt or enforce any rule, regulation, or other provision or take any other action, including posting notice under Section 30.06, Penal Code, prohibiting or placing restrictions on the storage or transportation of a firearm or ammunition in a locked, privately owned or leased motor vehicle by a person, including a student enrolled at that institution, who holds a license to carry a concealed handgun and lawfully possesses the firearm or ammunition:

(1)  on a street or driveway located on the campus of the institution; or

(2)  in a parking lot, parking garage, or other parking area located on the campus of the institution.

The Act takes effect September 1, 2013.