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Campus Carry Passes Over Weekend

Photo via flickr.com/photos/ejmc/ (CC BY-ND 2.0)

After years of failed attempts, the Texas Legislature has passed a bill that will allow Texans with a concealed carry permit to bring their handgun onto public college campuses. KUT’s Ben Philpott reports.

The bill was not exactly what gun rights activists originally proposed. The House was able to add language last week that gave individual college campuses the ability to restrict where people with a concealed handgun license – or CHL – could bring their guns. The bill’s author, Republican Senator Brian Birdwell, said the amendment does not allow schools to randomly ban guns from campus.

“Bad example of what we would not find acceptable is, there’s a first aide station on the first floor of a 50 story building, therefor the whole building is a medical facility and we eradicate the whole building from CHL holders," Birdwell said. 

But how universities use their discretion over the next two years could be a matter of contention that lawmakers will deal with in 2017. The bill requires schools to file their campus gun plans with the legislature. A last second attempt to force private colleges and universities to allow guns on campus was stripped during a House/Senate conference committee.