10.07.16

29 VT Law Enforcement Agencies Receive New Support To Buy BULLETPROOF VESTS For Officers

Leahy: VT Law Enforcement Agencies
Receive Support To Buy Bulletproof Vests For Officers

. . . Funding Under Leahy Program Will Help Buy New Protective Vests
For More Than 200 Vermont Officers

(FRIDAY, Oct. 7, 2016) -- Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) on Friday announced that grants will be coming to Vermont to support the purchase of lifesaving protective vests for Vermont law enforcement officers, under the Leahy-authored Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program.

The funding includes $68,400 to help 29 local police and sheriff departments buy 214 new bulletproof vests for their officers.

Leahy is the ranking member of the Senate Judiciary Committee and the author of the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program. He successfully fought for its reauthorization earlier this year. As a result, over the next five years more than 200,000 officers across the country will receive lifesaving vests.

“Law enforcement officers working on the frontlines must have the tools they need to protect themselves in the line of duty. We owe that to them and to their families.” Leahy said. “The Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program was created because of a tragic shootout with police on the Vermont-New Hampshire border. It is perhaps the most tangible support that Congress can provide to law enforcement officers, and I take great comfort in knowing that more Vermont officers will have the protection of lifesaving vests with these grants.”

Leahy said the program, which provides matching funds for departments to purchase bulletproof vests, is vital to small communities that struggle under tight budgets to keep their officers safe. Further responding to those needs, Leahy improved the federal grant program by authoring a provision in 2009 to waive in whole or in part the matching requirement for small jurisdictions in Vermont and other states that are experiencing financial hardships.

Leahy frequently hears from Vermont law enforcement officers about the escalating presence of powerful weapons found at the scenes of drug investigations. Since the Bulletproof Vest Partnership Grant Program first received funding in 1999, more than $1 million has been awarded to police departments in Vermont to buy more than 4500 protective vests for Vermont law enforcement officers.

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Vermont Jurisdictions Receiving Bulletproof Vest Grants

Jurisdiction Grant Amount Number of Vests
Barre Town $284.50 1
Bellows Falls Village $3,156.76 8
Bennington Town $3,580.00 8
Berlin Town $928.50 3
Brattleboro Town $1,400.00 4
Castleton Town $3,200.00 8
Essex Junction Village $1,497.50 5
Fair Haven Town $3,193.50 8
Franklin County $1,350.00 4
Grand Isle County $2,247.50 5
Hardwick Town $1,032.00 3
Hartford Town $1,348.50 3
Lamoille County $4,968.00 12
Manchester Town $2,136.00 8
Middlebury Town $1,335.00 3
Milton Town $1,876.00 4
Pittsford Town $1,425.00 4
Rutland City $4,350.00 12
Rutland County $989.47 3
Royalton $775.00 2
Shelburne Town $2,000.00 5
South Burlington City $5,390.00 12
Springfield Town $1,547.50 5
St. Albans City $2,920.50 9
Vergennes City $3,325.00 7
Williston Town $2,070.00 5
Wilmington Town $2,528.01 9
Winhall Town $2,250.50 6
Woodstock Village $4,262.50 11
Totals for Vermont $68,401.13 214

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