Blinn College District board approves policyregarding campus carry
Senate Bill 11 goes into effect for Blinn and other Texas community colleges on Aug. 1
April 18, 2017
The Blinn College District Board of Trustees approved amendments regarding campus carry to Policy CHF(LOCAL) during its regular meeting Tuesday.
Senate Bill 11, also known as the “campus carry” law, was passed during the 84th Texas Legislature and allows concealed handgun license holders to carry concealed handguns at Texas higher education institutions. The law became effective for four-year public universities in August
While concealed carry will become active on that date, the open carrying of firearms remains illegal at Texas public universities and community colleges.
Senate Bill 11 allows college presidents and CEOs to establish reasonable rules for restricted zones on campus while incorporating feedback from faculty, staff, students, and the community. To assist in this task, Blinn established a 34-member Campus Carry Task Force representing administrators, faculty, staff, and students from the College’s four campuses. This task force presented Blinn District President/CEO Dr. Mary Hensley a 245-page report detailing its research and public input, and outlining its recommendations for campus carry guidelines at Blinn.
“I would like to commend the Campus Carry Task Force for the countless hours of research and discussion that provided the foundation for Blinn’s campus carry policies,” Hensley said. “The Task Force’s efforts have helped to ensure that all Blinn College locations remain a safe environment for students, employees, and campus visitors.”
The Task Force designed its recommendations to allow campus carry unless specific extenuating circumstances required exceptions. Whenever possible, Blinn’s Task Force recommendations matched the policies established at Texas A&M University to prevent confusion for the significant number of students who co-enroll at both institutions.Blinn’s campus carry policy includes no specific firearms ban in:
- campus residential facilities, provided the student acquires a mandatory, approved storage device;
- single-occupant offices, though faculty members may follow an appeals process to seek exclusion;
- areas where minor children are present, based on Attorney General Ken Paxton’s Opinion KP-0120;
- classrooms that include dual credit students, although rules for off-campus sites will be applicable;
- the Star of the Republic Museum or the Dr. W.W. O’Donnell Performing Arts Center;
- campus health clinics or the Post Office Campus in Bryan;
- or in Blinn College District vehicles.
Frequently Asked Questions
What does Campus Carry mean?
Senate Bill 11, also known as the “Campus Carry” law, allows concealed handgun license holders to carry concealed handguns on the campus of Texas higher education institutions. Full text of Senate Bill 11.
Where at Blinn is a concealed handgun license holder not allowed to carry a firearm?
Blinn policy prohibits concealed carry on the second floor of the Health Science Center Campus due to the presence of hands-on labs that require physical contact, as well as MRI and x-ray machines that pose a safety risk with the presence of firearms.
The policy also bans concealed carry at UIL-sponsored events and sporting events, where firearms are already banned by Texas Penal Code Subsection 46.035(b)(2).
Concealed carry will be banned during any grievance process, appeal proceeding involving a disinterested third-party committee gathering testimony from the involved parties, or the formal hearing portion of the total process, as detailed in Board policy and administrative regulations.
What should I do if I see an individual carrying a handgun on campus?
The safest course of action is to call 911 so police can make contact with the individual.
How do I know where I can and cannot carry my licensed concealed handgun?
Signage in accordance with Texas Penal Code 30.06 will be posted clearly identifying locations where concealed carry is prohibited. All such signage is posted by the Blinn College Police Department.
How do Blinn’s Campus Carry policies and procedures differ from those at Texas A&M University?
Whenever possible, Blinn’s policies match the policies established at Texas A&M University to prevent confusion for the significant number of students who co-enroll at both institutions. To review Texas A&M’s Campus Carry policies and procedures, visit: www.tamu.edu/statements/campus-carry.html.
What is the “Open Carry” law and does it allow license holders to openly carry a handgun on campus?
House Bill 910, also known as the “Open Carry” law, permits handgun license holders to openly carry a handgun with no duty to conceal it in areas where it is not prohibited by law. This law became effective on January 1, 2016. Full text of House Bill 910.
Does the “Open Carry” law allow license holders to openly carry a handgun on campus?
No. House Bill 910 states that a handgun license holder cannot carry a partially or wholly visible handgun, regardless of whether it is holstered, and intentionally or knowingly display the handgun in plain view of another person on the premises (building) of a college or university, or any driveway, street, or parking area of a college or university. Full text of House Bill 910.
Can faculty discuss campus carry in the classroom?
Yes. Any discussion, though, should align with the course syllabus and objectives, and the faculty member should not convey to students the faculty member’s position in favor or opposition, or evaluate a student’s position in favor or opposition.
Can faculty include language in their course syllabus regarding campus carry?
To ensure uniformity and compliance with state law, faculty who choose to address campus carry in their course syllabus should use the following statement:
According to Texas Penal Code, Section 46.03, individuals are prohibited from intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly, possessing or going with a firearm on the physical premises of a school or educational institution, any grounds or building on which an activity sponsored by a school or educational institution is being conducted, or in a passenger transportation vehicle of a school or educational institution, whether the school or educational institution is public or private, unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization of the institution. Concealed weapons permit holders on property owned or controlled by a community college are subject to this prohibition until August 1, 2017. “Premises” means a building or a portion of a building. The term does not include any public or private driveway, street, sidewalk, or walkway, parking lot, parking garage, or other parking area.
CHF (Local) - Board Approved 4-18-17 - Effective 8-1-17