On September 1, Texas will change requirements for those with disabled veterans or DV license plates to use parking spaces for Americans with disabilities.
Fort Hood will also change its installation guidelines to reflect Texas law beginning September 1.
Currently, drivers with DV license plates can park in disabled parking spaces, but in two weeks these drivers will also need an ADA sign on the rearview mirror in their car or the ADA symbol on their license plate.
“One or the other (works),” said Fort Hood Police Chief Joe Ybarra, director of traffic management for the Emergency Services Directorate, of the signs and symbols required. “Parking in a disabled parking lot with a DV license plate is no longer permitted.”
Ybarra said the process of securing a sign is fairly straightforward, noting that as of December 1, the DMV will no longer issue disabled signs without a doctor’s signature.
“If you go to their website (of the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles) now, they will provide specific instructions. As far as I know, you can either receive a letter from the VA (Veterans Administration) if your disability is caused by the VA, and / or from your doctor, your family doctor can send these documents to the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) so that you can use this poster to get.”
Information on applying for or renewing disabled parking posters can be found at https://www.txdmv.gov/motorists/disabled-parking-placards-plates.
Ybarra said that he and Lieutenant Andrew Samarripa, a DES instructor and public information officer, had to testify before entering III. Most of the vehicles they checked already complied with the new state law.
“I think we checked about nine vehicles,” said Ybarra. “One in nine was not compliant. Here, too, the law is not yet in force, but only one vehicle (we have seen) would not be compliant. “
Another new state law will also come into effect on September 1st: the Texas Firearm Carry Act of 2021. Unlike the Americans with Disabilities Act’s parking changes that Fort Hood will enact, the installation will not be subject to the new open / concealed carrying of firearms.
“Not at all,” said Samarripa. “This (Fort Hood) is a state property and a military facility, and it is one of the Forbidden Areas recognized by the State of Texas (under the new law).
“We are continuing as usual,” continued Samarripa. “Part of that information campaign … is to make sure citizens, civilians and retirees alike, realize that the Great Place has not changed just because the great state of Texas changed its gun laws.”
For information on the registration, transportation, and storage of privately owned firearms at Fort Hood, please visit the Post’s website at https://home.army.mil/hood/index.php/my-fort/visitor-information/firearms- Registration.