A new bill signed into law Wednesday mandates that police departments across Illinois provide bulletproof vests for their officers.
According the Illinois General Assembly, the Law Enforcement Officer Bulletproof Vest Act:
Provides that each law enforcement agency within the State shall provide a bulletproof vest for every law enforcement officer of that agency who is employed as a new recruit by that agency on or after the effective date of the Act as part of the officer’s initial equipment issue.
“We constantly stress how important it is to keep our communities safe,” State Sen. Tony Munoz, D-Chicago said in a statement. “This legislation makes sure we’re doing our best to protect those who protect us.”
Funding for the legislation will come from a combination of state funds and funds from the unit of local government that has jurisdiction over the law enforcement agency. Also, to receive federal grants for the purchase of new bulletproof vests the state or unit of local government will also be required to apply to the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Act of 1998.
“Lessening the financial burden on the State was a goal in drafting this legislation,” Munoz said. “Requiring law enforcement agencies to apply for federal grants makes sure we’re taking advantage of all available funds.”
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