By Gary Lloyd
The Trussville City Council tonight approved $22,495.40 worth of equipment for the Trussville Police Department’s school resource officers.
The council approved an $18,832 sales quote from Utility Associates, Inc. for patrol car cameras, software and installation.
The council approved $3,663.40 for Gulf States Distributors to provide four Tasers, four holsters and eight cartridges.
The council also approved going out to bid on four Ford F-250 four-wheel drive crew cab compressed natural gas trucks for school resource officers.
Almost immediately after the Newtown, Conn., Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting in December, Trussville Mayor Gene Melton and Trussville Police Chief Don Sivley asked that $400,000 be set aside from the contingency reserve fund for school resource officers. The council in December had approved a measure to set up funds up to $400,000 to Trussville Police Department’s budget for school resource officers. That $400,000, from the city’s contingency reserve fund, would cover $250,000 for salary and benefit line items, and $150,000 for equipment in the police budget.
The council last month reversed its budget amendments for school resource officer costs
. Trussville City Clerk Lynn Porter said the reversal does not mean the city isn’t fully committed to providing school resource officers for Trussville schools. Porter said that after meeting with the schools and much planning, it appears that by the time the hiring and training process is done, and by the time the schools are ready to implement new procedures, this fiscal year will almost be over and the amount will not be needed in this budget year, which ends Sept. 30.
“We’re on our way to doing what we told the schools and the community that we would do,” said Trussville City Council President Brian Plant.
School resource officers have been in place at Hewitt-Trussville middle and high school since before the Newtown, Conn., mass shooting. Since that shooting, additional security measures have been put into place at the Paine schools.
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