(USNewsMag.com) – Florida Sen. Rick Scott introduced legislation April 25 which would hire armed officers at schools in the U.S. The funding to hire the armed officers would come from redirecting the $80 billion in funding approved in President Joe Biden’s Inflation Reduction Act for the IRS.
The legislation, the School Guardian Act, would create a block grant program that would be open to K-12 schools, both private and public, to access funding needed to hire full time security. The Department of Justice would be responsible for administering the block grant program. Each state would receive funds, which the chief law enforcement agency in each state would then administer to schools that need armed officers. Any unused funds from the block grant program that states receive would be required back to the Department of Justice.
The legislation requires reporting which gives oversight of how the block grant funds are spent to Congress.
The national program would be based on the Florida program that helped schools to hire armed resource officers which Scott enacted while he was governor after the shooting in Parkland. The Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program was named after one of the adult victims of the shooting. The Florida Department of Education says that out of 67 counties in Florida 46 currently participate in the program. The other counties work with local law enforcement agencies directly to provide security for their schools.
Ryan Petty, whose daughter Alaina died in the Parkland shooting, spoke out in support of the proposed legislation saying the bill is incredibly important. Tony Montalto, whose daughter Gina died in the Parkland shooting, also spoke out in support of the proposed legislation.
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