The Texas House and Senate have adopted the Conference Committee report and passed the open carry bill from both houses. HB 910 will now go on to Governor Greg Abbott to be signed into law.
Governor reacted positively to the news Tweeting:
The bill, which will take effect after being signed by the Governor on January 1, 2016, will allow people with Concealed Handgun Licenses to openly carry a handgun in a belt or shoulder holster. Should the Campus Carry Bill pass on Saturday as expected, licensees will not be able to openly carry a handgun on campus.
Other places where concealed carry is not authorized remains unchanged.
The so-called “Dutton Amendment” which would prohibit police officers from stopping someone openly carrying a handgun solely because they were carrying a handgun has been removed by the Conference Committee. However, some legislators argued earlier this week that court rulings already prohibit such investigatory stops.
Senator Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls), the Senate sponsor of the bill, said “I am thrilled that we were able to come to an agreement and finally pass licensed open carry today,” in a statement obtained by Breitbart Texas. “This was my top priority of the session and I worked hard to address law enforcement concerns while working to strengthen our Second Amendment Rights.”
“Our state legislature has not made such a substantial change to our gun policy in more than 20 years when former Senator Jerry Patterson passed licensed concealed carry, and I was truly honored to carry this critical legislation,” Estes continued. “I couldn’t have done this without the strong leadership of Lt. Governor Patrick and the overwhelming support from my colleagues in the Senate and the House.”
Senator Estes confirmed the Dutton Amendment was not necessary because it was simply a “restatement of current constitutional law.
Chairman Larry Phillips was the author of HB 910. He was unavailable for comment at the time this article was published.
The conference report and the final version of the bill are attached below.
The bill now moves on to Governor Abbott for signature.