Texas starts 'open carry' Jan. 1

Texas starts 'open carry' Jan. 1

WICHITA FALLS, TX (KSWO) -Starting Jan. 1, Wichita Falls and the rest of Texas will officially join Oklahoma as an "open carry" gun state.

Texans will no longer be required to conceal their weapons on the first of the year, but can wear them outside their clothing if they so choose. Many of the state's existing gun laws will still be in effect for 2016 and beyond.

All residents are still required to have a license to carry a handgun, and any openly displayed guns must be secured in a holster on the shoulder or belt.

The main change going into effect is that guns can be carried visibly. Long-guns, rifles and shotguns were already allowed to be publicly displayed so long as it was done in a non-threatening manner. Hand guns will have the same qualifier.

Concealed and openly carried guns are still not allowed on school property or school-related functions, courtrooms, secure areas of airports, polling places or post offices. It is also illegal to carry a firearm into any business that received more than half of its revenue from alcohol sales.

Business can also elect to not allow firearms on their property by either posting a "51% Sign" designating their alcohol sales, a "30.06 Sign" that bans concealed carry and/or a "30.07 Sign" that bans open carry. The business owner can also verbally notify you of the policy.

For more information about the open carry law in Texas, click here.

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