Minor tweaks in the offing for UT’s concealed handgun policy

Rules regarding the carrying of concealed handguns at the University of Texas prompted considerable discussion by the university’s governing board as they were about to take effect last year.

On Wednesday, members of a UT System Board of Regents committee didn’t say a word about minor revisions expected to take effect in the coming days.

The changes to UT’s campus carry policy clarify some definitions but don’t materially change the policy, UT President Gregory L. Fenves told me.

“There are no changes to the exclusion zones,” Fenves said, referring to areas, like on-campus residence halls, that are largely off-limits to concealed handguns.

 

The clarifying definitions are written with lawyerly precision. Take, for example, the definition of a sole occupant office, which UT’s policy says can be declared off-limits to handguns only via oral notice to anyone who might enter:

“A sole occupant office is a room with at least one door and walls that extend to the ceiling that is assigned to a single person as his or her workspace. The occupant must give oral notice of exclusion.”

The revisions are scheduled to be discussed by the full UT board Thursday, but it’s extremely unlikely that the nine-member board will alter them. Under state law, a governing board must muster at least a two-thirds vote to change rules adopted by a campus president.

The UT board changed one of Fenves’ rules last year, voting 6-2 to eliminate a provision that would have prohibited chambered rounds in concealed semiautomatic handguns on campus.

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