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Securing Florida schools would cost billions

Posted: 12:17 PM, Sep 05, 2018
Updated: 2018-09-05 16:17:46Z

SUNRISE, Fla. (AP) —  The sheriff leading the Florida commission investigating February's high school massacre said it would cost billions to fully implement a model security plan for the state's schools.

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri told the Marjory Stoneman Douglas Public Safety Commission on Wednesday that adding security measures such as high-tech video systems, metal detectors and bullet-proof glass at the state's 4,200 public schools would cost more than $2 billion.

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In addition, placing at least one armed police officer at each campus would cost $400 million annually. Gualtieri said there are 1,350 police officers assigned to schools and some have more than one officer. He said there aren't enough available police officers in the state to hire enough to fill the gaps.

The commission has been meeting about every four weeks since April. The members include law enforcement, education and mental health officials, a legislator and two parents of victims and they will issue a report by Jan. 1 recommending changes to the Legislature and the next governor.