Texas Senate Bill 12 would provide body armor for police officer - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Texas Senate Bill 12 would provide body armor for police officers across the Lone Star State

Wolfforth Police Chief Rick Scott (Source: KCBD Video) Wolfforth Police Chief Rick Scott (Source: KCBD Video)

Senate Bill 12 is one step closer to providing funds to outfit officers across the Lone Star State with new and improved body armor.

The bill, which passed the house on Tuesday, is designed to create state funding to provide officers with vests that can withstand rounds from high-caliber firearms.

According to the Texas Tribune, the vests could cost the state about $25 million.

We spoke with the Wolfforth Police chief to get a better idea about what this will mean for our local departments.

"You hope you never have to go to a call where your life is put at risk, but that's always a possibility," said Wolfforth Police Chief Rick Scott.

 Scott said this bill would be a welcome source of funding.

"I think we spend $600 to $700 for a vest. We have 11 officers."

That savings totals up to more than $7,000, which Chief Scott said will be put to good use.

"Any savings of money, we like to put towards training."

Scott said the potential passage of this bill comes at just the right time.

"These vests typically expire. The usual shelf-life is about five years. We are to a point where we're needing to replace just about every vest that we have."

Scott said providing each and every one of his officers body armor goes beyond the physical nature of the job.

"Every officer, when they're responding to calls, it is our policy that they're wearing a vest. It's important for their mindset, and not only for their mindset, but for their families' mindset….that at least there's some level of protection to that officer when they're on the streets."

Scott said while the passage of this bill would be greatly appreciated, he said he will do everything within his power to keep his officers safe.

"We're gonna get the vests for our officers one way, or another. Any state funding, grant funding, just helps us ensure that it's gonna get done a lot easier."

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