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West Virginia Senate Passes bill to allow Veterans, retired Police to provide Armed Security in Schools

January 14th, 2024 by WCBC Radio

West Virginia could contract with military veterans and retired law enforcement officers to provide armed security at K-12 public schools under a bill passed Friday by the Republican-controlled state Senate. Republican Sen. Eric Tarr said the bill was brought to him by retired military officers concerned about school shootings happening across the country.

The bill passed unanimously with support from the 34-member body’s three Democrats. The legislation will now be considered by the House of Delegates. This bill would allow county boards of education to contract with an honorably discharged veteran, former state trooper, former deputy sheriff or former federal law enforcement officer. The contractor would not be a school resource officer or considered law enforcement, nor would they have arrest power. The contractor would need to have a concealed carry permit, pass a pre-employment drug screening and have undergone physical, vision and psychiatric examinations. The bill also requires potential contractors to undergo training with the West Virginia State Police and complete a course on firearms and/or lethal use of force.