As they wrapped up the 2019 legislative session over the Memorial Day weekend, Texas legislators, by a slim margin, voted to send HB1177, known as the Natural Disasters bill, to Governor Greg Abbott for his signature. Three Republicans folded, joining the Dems.
The NRA-backed measure protects law abiding citizens from being charged with a crime for carrying a handgun without a “license to carry” during declared state or local disasters enabling them to protect their property from looters for a week.
The Dallas Morning News reports, “Under current law, Texans who can legally own a firearm don’t need an additional license to openly carry a long arm, like a AR-15. However, to carry a handgun openly or concealed, Texans must get a ‘license to carry,’ which requires taking a course, including a shooting test, passing a background check and paying a fee.”
The fee is $140 with a $70 renewal after 4-years. The intended to impede processing time runs between 60-180 days.
Gun owners asked for these license rules to be loosened after Hurricane Harvey hit the Gulf Coast in 2017. KHOU TV 11 reports, “Looters hit Houston after Harvey to the tune of nearly $1 million.” These homegrown thugs robbed businesses and their neighbor’s flooded homes, while good Samaritans from across the U.S. did whatever they could to provide assistance.
Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo, an appointed Democrat whose annual taxpayer financed salary exceeds $260,000, ignores the realities as he previously told Texas citizens who support our Second Amendment protections, “I am not interested in your views as it pertains to this issue.”
The NRA tracks gun laws across the United States. This interactive map provides important information.