The following changes to Dyess Air Force Base’s personal firearms policy doen’t enable concealed carry on base. The policy doesn’t include base contractors in its provisions . But it’s a step in the right direction that protects airmen and women as they travel to and from base. Press release:
by Airman 1st Class Katherine Miller
7th Bomb Wing Public Affairs
12/3/2015 – DYESS AIR FORCE BASE, Texas — Changes to the Dyess Force Protection Plan, signed and approved by Col. David Benson, 7th Bomb Wing commander, now permits authorized personnel that possess a current and valid Texas Concealed Handgun License or a reciprocating state concealed carry license to transport and secure privately-owned handguns in privately-owned vehicles within legal boundaries of Dyess Air Force Base . . .
“While this policy change does not allow concealed carry on base, it does allow those who carry concealed weapons to transport them onto and off the base in their vehicles,” said Col. David Benson, 7th Bomb Wing commander [above]. “This provides a safe and secure way to bring their weapons on base.”
Individuals wishing to transport a handgun must also have a valid Department of Defense identification card or Common Access Card and also hold one of the following statues: active duty personnel, retired military personnel, dependents of active duty personnel or Department of Defense civilians. However, private contractors, visitors or holders of special/one-time passes are not allowed to bring their handguns into the legal boundary of Dyess AFB at any time.
Individuals are required to keep their Texas CHL or reciprocating state CCL on their person at all times when in the legal boundaries of Dyess AFB and must surrender it as well as their valid DoD identification card when approached by Security Forces, Office of Special Investigations or local law enforcement. Upon being stopped by SF, OSI or local law enforcement, individuals must immediately identify the presence and exact location of their handgun.
“It is imperative that you tell law enforcement that you have a weapon in your vehicle, that you have a concealed carry license and where the weapon is located within the vehicle,” said Maj. Mark Breed, 7th Security Forces Squadron commander. “Failure to do so could result in apprehension and a charge of failure to obey an order or regulation for military personnel or detention and administrative measures for civilian personnel.”
All individuals will secure handguns in their appropriate weapons case or vehicle compartment as well as maintain control of vehicle and/or compartment keys at all times. While this change now allows handguns in POVs, it does not allow the concealed carry of firearms on your person or within facilities on Dyess AFB.
Individuals will not remove handguns from POV at any time within the legal boundary of Dyess AFB. Also, handguns will not be stored or secured in an unattended POV for more than 24 hours while within legal boundaries of Dyess AFB. For Airmen living in the dorms, the weapons must still be checked into and out of the armory for storage.
Individuals residing in on-base dormitories, lodging or temporary living facilities are not permitted to store their handgun or weapon of any kind in their room at any time. The 7th SFS armory will remain as the mandated storage repository for these weapons. The 7th SFS maintains a list of weapons removed from the armory and will notify an Airman’s commander if the weapon is checked out for more the 72 hours and a leave form was not submitted.
The requirement for base residents, dorm residents and those in base housing, to register at the Visitor Control Center to maintain a weapon on base remains in place.
“This change does not waive the processes and procedures we have in place for the registration of weapons on base,” said Breed. “If anything, this change makes it even more important for those who own and maintain weapons to follow the procedures from when they first acquire a weapon for those residing on base.”
For more information about the Concealed Handgun Licensing Program, please visit: http://txdps.state.tx.us/rsd/chl/index.htm. [h/t AT]