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Weapons Use Rules in City and ETJ

Given the changes in open carry of handguns that went into effect in Texas this month, the Georgetown Police Department would like to offer a reminder about other rules regarding the use weapons.

With a few exceptions, it is unlawful for a person to discharge any firearm, air-powered weapon, archery device, or other weapon for any reason, including, but not limited to, hunting, sporting, target practice, or competition, within the city limits or within the city’s extra-territorial jurisdiction, which extends up to 3.5 miles beyond city limits.

Prohibitions on the use of weapons are common in many cities. It may be less well known that the prohibition also applies to areas within Georgetown’s ETJ.

There are a few exceptions to the prohibition. Exceptions include a weapon discharged in a shooting gallery or gunsmith establishment, a discharge that occurs with a permit issued by the City of Georgetown, or a discharge that is allowed by state law or United States law.

In addition to these exceptions, there are also two more exceptions that are unique to larger tracts of land in the ETJ or within the city, if the land was annexed after September 1, 1981.

The first exception states that a shotgun, air rifle, air pistol, BB gun, or bow and arrow may be discharged on a tract of land of 10 acres or more, and more than 150 feet from a residence or occupied building located on another property.

The second exception states that a center-fire or rim-fire rifle or pistol of any caliber may be discharged on a tract of land 50 acres or more and more than 300 feet from a residence or occupied building located on another property. In both cases, the projectiles must be discharged in a manner not reasonably expected to cause the projectile to cross the boundary of the tract.

To see a map of the Georgetown city limits and extra-territorial jurisdiction area, go to files.georgetown.org/city-limits-etj.

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