There's been a lot of discussion and misinformation floating around about the new "open carry" law in Texas. I won't get down into the weeds on all the ins-and-outs of it, but there are some simple things business owners should know.
First, I'll show my bias: I'm a firm believer in the right of the people to keep and bear arms. I've got the fancy Small Arms Expert Marksmanship ribbon with device (means they let me shoot the big gun, too). I've had what used to be called a CHL, or concealed handgun license (now an LTC, or license to carry), for years. Do I carry? None of your bidness. Our office welcomes people who choose to carry; however, there are business owners who are concerned about it, and it's to those folks that I address this.
If you don't mind having somebody carrying concealed in your place of business, but you don't want them to carry openly (in a holster on the belt or in a shoulder rig, the only two permitted ways), you have to post what's called the "30.07 notice" at EVERY entrance to your business, and it has to be EXACTLY like the description in the statute: 1) in contrasting colors with block letters at least one inch in height; 2) in both English and Spanish; 3) displayed in a “conspicuous manner” at the property’s entrance, and 4) say: “Pursuant to Section 30.07, Penal Code (trespass by license holder with an openly carried handgun), a person licensed under Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code (handgun licensing law), may not enter this property with a handgun that is carried openly.” NOW: that's only to prevent people from entering your premises. If you don't want to post the sign but don't want open carriers, you can tell them, either orally or in writing, that open carry is not allowed on your premises. If they refuse to leave (they probably won't), they can be charged with criminal trespass. The exception is the person with a "Judge/Prosecutor" LTC - these folks can carry, at least concealed, pretty much anywhere.
If you don't want any sort of weapon, concealed or open, on your premises, you need to post both a modified "30.06 notice" (no concealed carry) AND the 30.07 notice.
If you believe in the Second Amendment (c'mon, you KNEW I was gonna say that...), you don't have to post anything - in fact, you might even post a sign that says, "Weapons welcome here"!
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