With Texas joining the 44 other U.S. state or territories who have adopted Open Carry laws, Nueces Electric Cooperative will join the growing number of businesses who will restrict fire arms.

The Nueces Electric Board of Directors has determined the Co-op will prohibit Open Carry or Concealed Carry at all NEC facilities which are located in Calallen, Robstown, Ricardo, Ben Bolt and Orange Grove.

Assault precaution is not new to the local electric cooperative. Starting with service center additions in 2010, all cooperative offices are equipped with assault safety measures including security cameras, bullet-proof glass and secured entries.

With many of the facilities located in scarcely populated areas, the Co-op aimed to reduce the risk of robbery or assault of employees. However, due to recent national incidents, the Co-op aims to further ensure employee and public safety.

"We operate in rural America where guns and hunting are a natural way of life. We understand many gun owners are respectful and responsible, however, it is our responsibility to ensure we provide a safe business environment at all times," says Trace McCuan, NEC CEO. "We are a company who places safety as the number one priority in all of our daily actions. The decision was deliberated and ultimately, the conclusion was based on safety and risk management."

The Co-op supports the Second Amendment and understands members throughout the geographic area will bear arms. However, they are asked to secure them in their vehicle while conducting business at any of the Cooperative's facilities.