The Texas House on Tuesday gave an initial OK to a Senate bill that would supply officers on patrol across the state with bulletproof vests. The lower chamber has to take one more vote on the measure before it hits the governor’s desk.
The Texas Tribune reports that Senate Bill 12 by state Sen. Royce West, D-Dallas, would create and fund a bulletproof vest grant program to outfit approximately 50,000 officers statewide with vests that can withstand rounds from high-caliber firearms. The vests would cost the state about $25 million.
State lawmakers this session have prioritized legislation supportive of law enforcement, especially after the 2016 ambush that left six Dallas police officers dead and many more injured.
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who made the legislation a priority, said in January that the state would look for ways to continue funding the vests as they expire.