“The next tussle over Texas’ new open carry law is likely to come over one of its more mundane requirements: signs,” dallasnews.com conjects. Erroneously. Sorry guys, but this one’s a done deal. Come January 1, Texas businesses that wish to ban concealed carry will have to update their 30.06 signs (with mandatory 1″ tall letters in contrasting colors, prominently displayed at the entrance of a business) to conform to the new law, which changes the wording from “concealed handgun” [as above] to “handgun.” But wait! That’s not all . . .
And with the passage of the open carrying of guns, business owners who want to ban guns will instead have to post two new large signs instead of one . . .
The “30.07” open carry sign — which features the same kinds of requirements as the 30.06 sign — had been expected . . .
Requirements for the signs that businesses must post if they want to bar the open carrying of handguns:
— Must appear in contrasting colors with block letters at least one inch in height.
— Must be in both English and Spanish.
— Must be displayed in a “conspicuous manner” at the property’s entrance.
— Must 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.”
Again, businesses wishing to ban both concealed and open carry by law-abiding Texans will have to display TWO signs. Prominently. I call that a win, in the sense that the law puts a big ass scarlet letter on “gun free zones.” That said, Lone Star State business owners can simply ask open or concealed carriers to leave the premises, under force of law.
But the really good news: the Texas legislature has reduced carrying a firearm – openly or concealed – in contravention of the law from a Class A misdemeanor (punishable by up to one year in jail, a fine of up to $4,000, or both jail time and a fine) to a Class C (punishable by a fine of up to $500, no jail time). This is especially helpful for concealed carriers who feel it necessary to break the law for their own protection.
It’s hardly ideal, but the new signage laws and reduced gun possession charges are a good thing, not a bad thing. IMHO.