When Texas passed the shall issue concealed carry law in 1995, part of the deal concerned how people would be notified that a business did not allow concealed carry on the premises. A compromise was worked out: an entity that chose not to allow concealed carry on its premises was required to post a sign at all entrances, clearly showing people entering that concealed carry was not allowed. The sign had to be large and highly visible, in both English and Spanish. The letters had to be at least one inch tall. An example of the “30.06” sign is shown below. 30.06 comes from the statute that requires the sign. It takes up about one half of a door space . . .

When the legislature restored some open carry rights for people who had concealed carry permits, they decided to use the same requirements for banning open carry from an establishment. Because this requirement is to ban open carry, a separate sign is required.

The legislature made this code in sequence to the existing 30.06 code, so the new signs are “30.07” signs. They are nearly identical to the 30.06 signs, but they do not ban concealed carry, only open carry. If an establishment wishes to forgo the business of both concealed carriers and open carriers, they need to put up a literal “Wall of Text”, both 30.06 and 30.07 signs. Those signs together take up very close to an entire door.

Here is the relevant section in the Texas code. From legis.state.texas.us:

SECTION 43. Section 30.06(c)(3), Penal Code, is amended to
read as follows:
(3) “Written communication” means:
(A) a card or other document on which is written
language identical to the following: “Pursuant to Section 30.06,
Penal Code (trespass by license holder with  a
concealed handgun), a person licensed under Subchapter H, Chapter
411, Government Code (handgun licensing law), may not
enter this property with a concealed handgun”; or

(B) a sign posted on the property that:

(i) includes the language described by
Paragraph (A) in both English and Spanish;

(ii) appears in contrasting colors with
block letters at least one inch in height; and

(iii) is displayed in a conspicuous manner
clearly visible to the public.

SECTION 44. Chapter 30, Penal Code, is amended by adding
Section 30.07 to read as follows:

SECTION 43. Section 30.06(c)(3), Penal Code, is amended to
read as follows:
(3) “Written communication” means:
(A) a card or other document on which is written
language identical to the following: “Pursuant to Section 30.06,
Penal Code (trespass by license holder with a
concealed handgun), a person licensed under Subchapter H, Chapter
411, Government Code (handgun licensing law), may not
enter this property with a concealed handgun”; or

(B) a sign posted on the property that:

(i) includes the language described by
Paragraph (A) in both English and Spanish;

(ii) appears in contrasting colors with
block letters at least one inch in height; and

(iii) is displ

Sec. 30.07. TRESPASS BY LICENSE HOLDER WITH AN OPENLY
CARRIED HANDGUN. (a) A license holder commits an offense if the
license holder:

(1) openly carries a handgun under the authority of
Subchapter H, Chapter 411, Government Code, on property of another
without effective consent; and

(2) received notice that entry on the property by a
license holder openly carrying a handgun was forbidden.

(b) For purposes of this section, a person receives notice
if the owner of the property or someone with apparent authority to
act for the owner provides notice to the person by oral or written
communication.

(c) In this section:
(1) “Entry” has the meaning assigned by Section
30.05(b).

(2) “License holder” has the meaning assigned by
Section 46.035(f).

(3) “Written communication” means:

(A) a card or other document on which is written
language identical to the following: “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”; or

(B) a sign posted on the property that:

(i) includes the language described by
Paragraph (A) in both English and Spanish;

(ii) appears in contrasting colors with
block letters at least one inch in height; and

(iii) is displayed in a conspicuous manner
clearly visible to the public at each entrance to the property.

(d) An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor
punishable by a fine not to exceed $200, except that the offense is
a Class A misdemeanor if it is shown on the trial of the offense
that, after entering the property, the license holder was
personally given the notice by oral communication described by
Subsection (b) and subsequently failed to depart.

(e) It is an exception to the application of this section
that the property on which the license holder openly carries the
handgun is owned or leased by a governmental entity and is not a
premises or other place on which the license holder is prohibited
from carrying the handgun under Section 46.03 or 46.035.

(f) It is not a defense to prosecution under this section
that the handgun was carried in a shoulder or belt holster.

If the signs are not present, then it’s not illegal to carry the handgun into the establishment. Absent the signs, an establishment can ask an open carrier to leave, but they have to ask face to face. For that to hold up in court, it would likely have to be on video and audio recording, in the presence of witnesses, or in the presence of a police officer.

Courtesy (armabilene.com)

I suspect that many employers and employees will not actually be willing to tell customers to leave because they are openly carrying a holstered handgun. (The signs do not apply to long guns, which are directly protected by the Texas Constitution.) Some may, but the experience in other states indicate that those establishments will lose business, while those that simply choose to follow the lead of the government will gain that business. Second Amendment supporters outnumber anti-gunners by 5-10 to 1 or more, perhaps much, much more.

In addition, the dedication of an entire door’s worth of space to prevent people from exercising their Constitutional rights in your establishment has costs. It costs to have the signs made and put up; it costs to take down advertising from the space that the signs occupy. In short, putting up these signs is bad business.

For public spaces, the legislature made clear that most of them may not ban concealed carry or open carry in their premises; and for those, even if they put up a sign, the sign is not valid. This applies to the non-secure areas of airports.

I write these words from the Benbrook Public Library, just South of Fort Worth. Last year, the Library had a small no guns sign. It was not enforceable because it did not meet the 30.06 standards. This trip, the sign was gone. It was a welcome change.

In a few days, Texans will be legally able to open carry holstered handguns in most public places, just as citizens of 44 other states have the right to. In Texas’ case, it took 146 years to partially restore the right that was stripped from the Texas Constitution by the carpetbagger government in 1869.

There are only 5 states that have not kept or restored open carry rights, at least partially; California, Illinois, Florida, South Carolina, and New York. Florida and South Carolina are in a race to see which will restore open carry rights first.

©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.
Gun Watch

49 Responses to Sign of the Times? Texas Open Carry One Day Away

    • I call B.S.

      IL was last for concealed carry. No way will Springfield allow open carry. “That’s not who we are”…said one former Illinoisian.

      • So true. I would love to be able to open carry in this wonderful state that is unfortunately ran by the shithole called Chicago. If it wasn’t for the courts, we wouldn’t have concealed carry today tomorrow or ever.

    • I thought Florida had a “while fishing” open carry exception. If true, doesn’t that count as “at least partially” restored?

      • Florida currently allows open carry while engaged in, or going directly to and from, lawful target shooting, hunting, fishing, and camping. FL Statutes 790.25(3)(h), (j), and (k).

  1. “(d) An offense under this section is a Class C misdemeanor
    punishable by a fine not to exceed $200, except that the offense is
    a Class A misdemeanor if it is shown on the trial of the offense
    that, after entering the property, the license holder was
    personally given the notice by oral communication described by
    Subsection (b) and subsequently failed to depart.”

    This was a welcome change to the law. Class C misdemeanor with a $200 fine for carrying in a No-No sign area, which is only if you are caught, of course.

    That’s basically like getting a speeding ticket. Carry on.

    • This is a piece of info I knew that I had read somewhere but couldn’t remember where.

      I plan on going to a movie this weekend and saw that the theatre has a very small “No Firearms Allowed” sign that you have to be specifically looking for in order to notice it.

      No 30.06 sign, no 30.07 sign, no info on their website – I’m going in concealed.

      • Under normal conditions I’d oppose going against the theater’s desires, their property, their rules as to what they’ll let you bring onto it. (NOTE: For reasons I won’t go into for space reasons, I don’t think that way about government entities.)

        However, nudging such asshole businesses into posting big obnoxious signs, which will probably lose them even more business than you gave them, does have its appeal. But then again…the only way to nudge them is for them to see your gun.

        • Under normal (actually all) conditions, I want to have a fighting chance if something goes down. If their sign isn’t meeting the legal requirements then I’ll take advantage of it.

          I don’t get a chance to go to the movies often. Normally I wait to see it on DVD. However, we’re talking Star Wars and I want to see it on the big screen before it comes out on DVD.

          As a side note, both iTunes and Walmart are already doing pre-orders for the digital release. That’s just crazy!

        • “Under normal conditions I’d oppose going against the theater’s desires…”

          Based on your name, I assume you’re not fully aware of the subtleties of Texas sign requirements. The theater cited has posted a small, non-compliant sign banning guns. Such signs mean nothing, legally. In the real world, a business that posts a non-compliant sign is *actually* saying: “I’ve put up a meaningless sign so the MDA types will leave me alone. Those of you with licenses know that you and your concealed weapons are welcome here.”

        • @Ben, I’m a regular enough reader of TTAG (which is run out of Texas) to know that 30.06 and in a few hours, 30.07 carry the force of law there, but a cute (not really) little “No Berettas” sign does not.

          My general policy, though, is to abide by the wishes of a private property owner, even if expressed in a non-force-of-law way. If he doesn’t want my gun on his property, then I stay off it. I don’t have the right to be there, and I don’t “need” to be there. And he loses any money I might otherwise have chosen to spend at his establishment. That’s why I said what I did… I’d normally stay off his property, but maybe by going on to it open carrying, I can FORCE him to either put up the force-of-law sign (which will look obnoxious, ruin the decor, and likely alienate a ton of potential customers), or go through the inconvenience of asking me (and others like me) to leave, also alienating people, or (miracles sometimes happen) change his jackass policy. I know I would be breaking no law by doing so (unless I refuse to leave when asked). As I said, it would be tempting, but it would be a dick move on my part, and I’d be violating what I conceive of as his property rights, even if I were violating no actual statute.

          Yeah I realize you think that he’s really winking at you by posting a non-compliant sign. I don’t know where you get your mind reading powers from, but in any case I don’t want to reward him for nodding to the hoplophobe culture. MDA’s goal is to get these signs up everywhere so they can make carrying socially unacceptable via attitude change, even if they can’t do it through legal change. As such we need to do what we can to make putting those signs up hurt. That means denying the jackass your money.

          But, even going back to my “tempting” thought, there’d be no point to concealing on such a person’s property as such does not do anything whatosever to nudge him into pissing or getting off the pot, it just rewards an asshole hoplophobe business owner.

      • The “No Firearms Sign” is not even valid in Texas.

        It’s supposed to be 30.06 and/or 30.07, or it’s meaningless.

        And now, with the new law, breaking the 30.06 posting is basically a slap on the hand, at best.

  2. I cannot wait for Shannon’s next MDA rally in TX. . . . . that would be worth a trip down to watch her reaction

  3. “Second Amendment supporters outnumber anti-gunners by 5-10 to 1 or more, perhaps much, much more.”

    Where do you get a ratio like that? Did you take a poll in a gun store? If basic 2A rights were that overwhelmingly popular, even in Texas, it wouldn’t have taken this long to get them codified.

    • He’s likely referring to people that actually attend MDA rallies, etc. vs. people that attend pro gun rallies etc. Active participants. Unfortunaly, people who really don’t give a crap but are probably at least a little anti-gun and will drink almost any Kool- aid the media offers as long as it doesn’t require any of their time or money outnumber both groups by at least 25 to 1. (Only 3% of texans have a CHL)

    • Seriously, Curtis? The fact is that even with a majority of any kind we, as citizens, have a hard time getting our “elected” officials to walk in step. They seem to act according to their own personal (self-serving) agendas.

      • Seriously, Tim.
        The key word in your post is “elected.” Self-serving politicians do whatever it takes to keep their jobs, which usually means pandering to their constituents. If the people were overwhelmingly pro-gun rights, the whole country would have the same laws as Vermont.

    • It is the ratio that you see on online polls of almost any Second Amendment related issue.

      Those are a pretty good measure of people who care enough to participate in an online poll.

      The ratios are usually 3-7 to 1, but I have seen them as high as 20-1 when the questions are clear.

      The only reason that we have the level of infringements on the Second Amendment that we do is the overwhelming support for those infringements by the vast majority of the media for the past 50 years.

      Since a little bit of new media has come into play about 20 years ago, we have been educating and actively organizing and lobbying. We have started to turn things around.

      If the Internet was available in 1932, the National Firearms Act would never have passed.

    • Yes, technically. If you get a permit to carry (which you won’t), there’s no distinction between open or concealed, so it would be legal to carry either way. Of course that’s a moot point, since no NJ judge will sign off on a carry permit for a civilian.

      NJ is full of of liberal bureaucrats who probably think so highly of themselves when they decide to graciously let people exercise some gun rights. But of course they know what’s better for you, and carrying a gun in public is too risky for the collective, so no carry permit for you.

    • Precisely. If you OC in MA (except for bank guards and the like), the least you can expect is an unpleasant encounter with the cops, whether or not you’re charged with disturbing the peace or some other BS charge.

      I friend of mine inadvertently flashed his carry piece a few years ago. He was braced by the cops but not ticketed or arrested, because it was clearly inadvertent. Otherwise, he could have been deemed an “unsuitable person” and lost his LTC.

    • I regularly open carry in southeastern MA.

      The only interactions I’ve ever had where it was a topic were compliments.

      However, I suspect that might change if I wandered too close to Boston.

  4. Being a new resident of SC, what is on the docket to bring OC to this state? I believe there was an attempt a year or so back, but it died and I haven’t heard anything else going on since then.

      • Be that as it may, I usually only see 30.06 at main entrance. I’m not gonna raise a stink if someone calls me out when I went through an unposted side entrance (thinking the “to go pickup” door of lots of restaurants). I’ll just leave and not come back again.

  5. We received a very pleasant telephone call from Home Depot’s customer service department this morning, thanking me for my recent email to them. In that email, I had thanked Home Depot for publicly stating that they will not ban open carry in their Texas stores and for relating that their experience with open carry in other states and concealed carry in Texas was that they’ve been nonissues.

    I mentioned that as homeowners and residential rental property owners, my wife and I spend far more than the average Home Depot customer in their stores and that we welcome continuing that many years long relationship. The customer service rep said they’ve received feedback from both sides, but it’s been overwhelmingly in favor of open carry, even from people who don’t plan to OC, themselves.

    I sent similar emails to both Kroger and Bass Pro Shops, congratulating them for taking identical public stands in favor of open carry, as well.

    HEB, Gringo’s Mexican Kitchen, and Whataburger, however, have all come out publicly against open carry and are posting 30.07 signs. My tactful emails to these companies, expressing my displeasure with their corporate decisions to cave in to irrational prejudices and our inability to continue doing business, have so far gone without response. Oh well.

  6. On the HEB stores they etched the sign onto the bottom of the glass doors, does that even meet the “contrasting colors” requirement? semi transparent on transparent?

    • I sent an email to TTAG about this but they have not replied. The sign makes the contrasting colors requirement but no other. The sign is divided between both doors, is not the correct height and because itty is split, lacks all the correct wording

  7. Greetings fellow Benbrook’er! (Benbrookian?)
    Not much to add, ‘cept I have yet to enter a cigar shop around here that doesn’t have a ‘concealed firearms welcome’ sign.
    Kinda like a welcome mat for me =)

  8. “Second Amendment supporters outnumber anti-gunners by 5-10 to 1 or more, perhaps much, much more.”

    Citation needed.

  9. Thanks for the info, Dean–I had been making many wrong assumptions about the new law, your post cleared them up nicely.

  10. >I write these words from the Benbrook Public Library, just South of Fort Worth. Last year, the Library had a small no guns sign. It was not enforceable because it did not meet the 30.06 standards. This trip, the sign was gone. It was a welcome change.<

    It wouldn't have been enforceable even if it had been a correct 30.06. Benbrook Library District is a political subdivision and not a private, non-profit library so they are subject to the same rules as cities, counties, etc.

  11. The power of the State, at the point of a gun, should NEVER be used to enforce a private policy. Ever.

    The requirement for these signs should be repealed completely, with all disputes falling under simple trespass or civil litigation.

    • Be careful what you wish for. “Simple trespass” in Texas is a Class B misdemeanor, with a possible 6-month stretch in the county jail and a $1000 fine, not a special Class C with a $200 fine limit (most Class C’s carry a max $500 fine). And the “notice” requirement would be a lot looser.

  12. I’d be curious to see if anyone open carries a pistol in an ankle holster. Thigh holsters most people don’t wear correctly, probably due to too many tv shows, and I’d probably roll my eyes at somebody wearing one for open carry. IF I needed to open carry a pistol so low that I thought I’d need a thigh holster, I’d wear a duty holster that sat lower.

    Some places that don’t get my money any longer are AMC theaters, Cinemark Theaters and most other theaters, because they all want to be victims. AMC use to have their signs posted on 8.5×11 paper but somebody corrected them on it. I usually wait until the DVD or iTunes release now…sadly.

  13. New York and California not in my living (born in eighties) white out court force and before they build more no gun zones as washington dc and illinois today together if ccw comes shall issue !!
    Illinois 2025-2030 Licensed Only if you can make the u turn arround (mostley the “gun free zones”) but for near time it s right it end after florida and south carolina for a long time.

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