Tag Archives: guards

Haslam’s Hesitancy on Statewide School Guards

Gov. Bill Haslam says the idea of putting school resources in all K-12 schools should be a matter of fairness as well as a matter of money… and the two are interrelated. From WPLN:
Williamson and Sumner county schools have proposed putting armed school resource officers in lower grades.
In most districts, the SROs are limited to middle and high schools. Part of the money comes from the state, but Governor Haslam says he’s slow to increase funding on a case-by-case basis.
“Let’s just say we’re going to put school resource officers in and the school district is going to put in X million and the municipality is going to put up Y million and will the state put in Z million? Well, I don’t think that’s fair unless we look at it on a statewide basis.”
The cost of putting armed officers in Williamson County’s elementary schools alone would run close to $2 million.
Currently the state offers just $4.8 million in grants to districts. Roughly a third of them pair the money with local funding for resource officers. Others buy security cameras
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Note: See also, the TNReport video on Haslam discussing the subject.

More TN Views & News on Armed Guards in Schools

Congressmen Mostly Quiet, TN Cost Estimated
Nooga.com asked U.S. Sens. Lamar Alexander and Bob Corker, as well as U.S. Reps. Scott DesJarlais and Chuck Fleischman, whether they agreed with the NRA’s call for armed guards in all schools. All have taken campaign contributions from the NRA. (Full story HERE.)
Corker and DesJarlais didn’t respond .Fleischmann’s response didn’t address the question. Alexander did, sort of. Excerpts:
Asked to comment on LaPierre’s remarks Friday, Fleischmann, who boasted his NRA endorsement in television advertisements for his most recent campaign, voiced neither support nor disagreement.
“As a father, the events in Connecticut break my heart,” Fleischmann said in an emailed statement. “Children are our greatest treasure, and we need to ensure their safety, particularly in a school environment. No student should ever have to be afraid of going to school. Brenda and I send our prayers to the victims and their families.”
Fleischmann accepted $2,000 in NRA contributions this year.
…On Friday, Alexander indicated that congressional action would not be able to ensure student safety, as LaPierre suggested. The senator added his hope that school systems at the local level would be reviewing their current safety measures in the wake of the shooting.
“Washington can’t make school safe, but parents, communities and teachers can,” Alexander said in an emailed statement. “In light of the tragedy at Newtown, I would think every local school board would be thinking about whether they need to take additional steps to make their schools safe from guns and other acts of violence.”
Were the gun lobby’s call to gain traction, Congress would be tasked with providing funding for at least one armed guard in each of the nation’s 98,817 public schools–1,803 of which are in Tennessee.
According to statistics from the U.S. Department of Labor, the annual mean wage for a security guard at elementary and secondary schools is $31,420, making a rough estimate of the cost of equipping schools with armed guards more than $3 billion nationally–and more than $56 million statewide.


Haslam Thoughts on Video
TNReport has a video of Gov. Bill Haslam’s comments on the subject (previous post HERE), wherein he voices misgivings. “I know a whole lot of teachers who wouldn’t want to be armed,” he said – including his daughter, a 2nd grade teacher. But he thinks there should be a discussion of causes of “mass violence” in schools and elsewhere.
Cookeville Police Chief: Two Officers in Every School, Every Day
Each morning this week, Cookeville Police officers have driven through the parking lots at all city schools, hoping to help students, teachers, and parents feel a little bit safe, reports the Herald-Citizen..
And Police Chief Bob Terry is talking about a giant leap in school security here, an idea that he knows would cost taxpayers quite a chunk of money, but would be worth it if the horror that happened in Connecticut ever occurred here.
He would like to see two trained police officers assigned to work in each school in this county every day.
“The county has only one School Resource officer in each of the three high schools, but in today’s world, I would like to see much more security in all our schools,” Chief Terry said.
“I know it would cost us, and I am a taxpayer too. But just think about this: you can’t walk into courthouses carrying a gun, you can’t walk into a police station carrying a gun unless you are an officer, you can’t walk into many places without going through several kinds of security measures. But anyone can just walk into our schools.”

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Approved Bill Lets TVA Guards Use Deadly Force

Security forces at TVA’s Sequoyah and Watts Bar nuclear plants would have authority to use deadly force to prevent sabotage at their facilities under legislation given final approval Thursday by the state Senate, according to the Chattanooga TFP..
Senators voted 32-0 for the bill, sponsored by Sen. Ken Yager, R-Harriman. The measure, which was previously approved by the House, now will go to Gov. Bill Haslam.
Yager, who represents Rhea County where Watts Bar is located, later called it “critically important that the scope of authority for nuclear facility security officers is clearly spelled out in state law,” in a news release.
“There should be no uncertainty as to whether they have the authority to effectively defend the public as well as themselves, against acts of radioactive sabotage,” Yager said.
The Tennessee Valley Authority’s general manager of nuclear security, Dr. Mark Finley, recently told lawmakers that officers at Watts Bar and Sequoyah are operating under the “Castle Doctrine.” The self-defense provision allows for the use of force, including deadly force, when threatened within one’s home.