Senate Bill 11, allowing for concealed carry of handguns on public universities in Texas, passed the Texas House of Representatives with a vote of 101-47-1 just before midnight Tuesday.
It now moves onto Gov. Gregg Abbott for final approval.
The bill states that a licensed holder may carry a concealed weapon on both public and private campuses, and bars public institutions from creating rules or regulations contradicting the bill. In addition, the bill exempts the state and colleges from liability of any action made by a concealed handgun license holder on college campuses.
The bill makes allowances for public institutions to regulate the storage of weapons in campus dormitories or other residential facilities. It allows for private institutions to create rules or regulations preventing concealed weapons on campuses. Weapons would still not be allowed in hospitals or any non-postsecondary schools located on college campuses, the bill states.
Senate Bill 11 also has language preventing the open carry of weapons on public college campuses regardless of Senate Bill 17’s outcome.
“In light of all these concerns and apprehensions, I feel the presence of concealed weapons will make campus a less-safe environment,” UT System Chancellor Bill McRaven said in a letter sent to Texas legislators in January.
The chancellor’s position is the system’s position, UTA President Vistasp Karbhari said in January.
Dylan Bradley contributed to this story.