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Texas' campus-carry law has officially taken effect as of Monday, allowing gun owners with concealed-handgun licenses to carry their firearms into public university buildings, classrooms and dorms in the state, the Associated Press reports.

The law, AP notes, takes effect on the 50th anniversary of the mass shooting at the University of Texas' clock tower.

The law applies to anyone who holds a Texas handgun license. To do so, AP notes, a person must be at least 21 (or 18, if in the military) and would have had to pass both classroom and gun-range-training courses. Restrictions are placed on convicted felons, people charged with felonies and high-level misdemeanors, or people with a history of mental illness.

The rules for the new law may vary from campus to campus, since each school is required to work with it on its own terms. AP uses the University of Texas at Austin as an example and reports that there, teachers are allowed to have their offices be "gun-free" zones. Dorm residents are allowed to have their guns in common areas but not in sleeping rooms, where any storage of weapons is forbidden. According to AP, there is an exception on the room restriction for visiting family members who are licensed to carry.

By contrast, at Texas A&M, guns are allowed in rooms, and teachers must get express permission from the administration before banning guns from their office.


And, according to AP, state law still prohibits weapons on certain campus locations, such as hospitals and sporting events. Under the law, any handguns in campus classrooms must be holstered and kept out of sight.

Read more at Talking Points Memo.