Proposed $34 million bill to secure NC schools - WBTV 3 News, Weather, Sports, and Traffic for Charlotte, NC

Proposed $34 million bill to secure NC schools

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CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) -

State legislators are working hard to prevent another tragedy such as the one in Newtown, Connecticut in December.

A gunman killed 26 people, including 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School.

Now, there's a bill in the North Carolina House that would provide more officers and counselors at schools across the state.

"House bill 452 is the nation's most comprehensive response to not only Newtown but to the issues of campus safety that have been there for quite some time," said Representative Rick Glazier, a democrat.

The bill would spend $34 million over the next two years on emergency planning, crisis response and security training.

A breakdown of costs include $20 million to place more school resource officers in elementary and middle schools, $10 million to hire additional school psychologists, guidance counselors and social workers, and $4 million to install panic alarm systems in every school.

Sgt. Irwin Carmichael trains deputies for the Mecklenburg County Sheriff's office. He thinks the bill is a good starting point, but he says training some teachers on security could be more cost-effective.

"North Carolina law enforcement officers have to go through a 40 hour firearms course, train them to the same level, they'll qualify with the officers every year," he said.

The bill also calls for school safety training exercises every two years, diagrams of every school for law-enforcement, and an anonymous tip line at every school.

"I think we need to start looking at everything and put everything on the table and look at all options," said Sgt. Carmichael.

The bill will be reviewed by a House education committee as early as next week.

 

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