Waller County's appeal to the SCOTEX (is that an existing acronym or did I just invent it?) is at this link:http://www.search.txcourts.gov/SearchMe ... aa7504915d
They are asking the SCOTEX to take the case to decide three things:
1. Under Verburgt v. Dorner, In the Interest of K.A.F., and the Texas Rules of
Appellate Procedure, does a Court of Appeals have jurisdiction over an appeal
if a motion to extend time to file notice of appeal is filed after the grace period
established in the Rules of Appellate Procedure?
2. Do signs posted at a courthouse that warn visitors that they may not enter the
premises with a firearm violate Section 411.209(a) of the Texas Government
3. Can a court dismiss a suit for lack of subject-matter jurisdiction and still award
court costs, attorney’s fees, and other relief under Chapter 27 of the Civil
Practice and Remedies Code?
In Issues1 and 3 they are fussing over the legal procedural issues of Holcomb's appeal to the 1st Circuit Court of Texas.
Issue 2 gets to what the rest of us really want to know, and it appears Waller County is still taking the position that in a building that houses a court room the entire building is off limits to LTC carry ( some foot notes removed):
II. Signs posted at a courthouse that warn visitors that they may not enter
the premises with a firearm do not violate Section 411.209(a) of the
Government Code, a statute with statewide importance considering
the volume of courthouses in Texas.
Government Code §411.209 states that a governmental entity
may not provide notice by a communication described by Section
30.06, Penal Code, or by any sign expressly referring to that law or
to a concealed handgun license, that a license holder carrying a
handgun under the authority of this subchapter is prohibited from
entering or remaining on a premises or other place owned or leased
by the governmental entity unless license holders are prohibited
from carrying a handgun on the premises or other place by Section
46.03 or 46.035, Penal Code. TEX. GOV’T CODE §411.209(a).
The plain language of Section 411.209(a) only prohibits “communication
described by Section 30.06, Penal Code, or by any sign expressly referring to [Penal
Code §30.06] or to a concealed handgun license.” Id. (emphasis added). That
language is very clear, unambiguous, and specific. Signs, including those posted by
Waller County, referring to Penal Code §46.03 are clearly not prohibited by the plain
language of Section 411.209(a). Additionally, a courthouse is a premises where
weapons are prohibited under Penal Code §46.03.
Penal Code §46.03 states:
(a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally,
knowingly, or recklessly possesses or goes with a firearm, illegal
knife, club, or prohibited weapon listed in Section 46.05(a):
(3) on the premises of any government court or offices utilized by
the court, unless pursuant to written regulations or written
authorization of the court;
Tex. Penal Code §46.03(a)(3).
In Section 46.034 “premises” is defined as “a building
or a portion of a building. The term does not include any public or private driveway,
street, sidewalk or walkway, parking lot, parking garage, or other parking area.” Id.
The plain language of Section 46.03(a)(3), combined with the definition of
“premises,” clearly and unambiguously prohibits an individual from carrying a
firearm into a building that houses a government court.
In addition to the plain language of Government Code §411.209 and Penal
Code §46.03, the legislative history of Penal Code §46.03 establishes that the
prohibition against firearms in courthouses extends to the entire building.
In 1993 the 73rd Texas Legislature passed Senate Bill 1067, which re-codified
the Texas Penal Code. At that time, Section 46.03(a)(3) prohibited weapons “in any government court or offices utilized by the court, unless pursuant to written regulations or written authorization of the court.” Tex. S.B. 1067, 73rd Leg., R.S.
(1993) (emphasis added). In 1995, the 74th Legislature passed Senate Bill 60, which
has become known as the “Texas Concealed Handgun Law.” That bill added section
46.035 to the Texas Penal Code and included the current definition of “premises” in
Penal Code §46.035(f)(3).
In 2003, the 78th Legislature passed Senate Bill 501 (“SB 501”), which
changed language found in Penal Code §46.03(a)(3) from “in any government court
. .”5 to “on the premises of any government court . . .” CR 67 at 002, line 13 (emphasis
added). This change in Section 46.03(a)(3) indicates a clear legislative intent to
prohibit firearms and other weapons from the entire building that houses a
government court or court office, not merely only from individual courtrooms and
offices. It would be meaningless for the legislature to amend Section 46.03(a)(3) if
their intention was for that section to have the exact same meaning before and after
The plain language of Government Code Section 411.209 and Penal Code
46.03, as well as the legislative history of Section 46.03 establish that firearms are
prohibited throughout an entire courthouse.