Arkansas Bill Seeks Armed Officers For All Schools

LITTLE ROCK (KFSM) — An Arkansas bill would fund a school resource officer position for every public school in the state.

The AP reports that Democratic Rep. Scott Baltz filed the draft this month requiring Arkansas school districts to have the officers by the 2020-21 year. School resource officers are armed law enforcement officers assigned to school campuses.

Baltz says the proposal would be costly, but he estimates the state has about $151 million in surplus that could go to funding the positions.

Republican Sen. Trent Garner said Wednesday the bill wouldn’t be able to consistently fund school safety because surplus funds fluctuate.

The bill is in response to looming safety questions at public schools in the wake of mass shootings at schools in Parkland, Florida, and Santa Fe, Texas.