Pittsylvania Co. Sheriff Applying for Grant for School Safety Initiative

Pittsylvania Co., VA - Supervisors in Pittsylvania County have voted to allow Sheriff Mike Taylor to apply for a federal grant to help get six new SROs in schools. It's all part of Taylor's School Safety Initiative.

Supervisors said the community wanted to increase school safety, but they don't want to increase taxes. They hope these grants will help alleviate that issue.

The federal grant would give the Sheriff's Office roughly $600,000, which would bring in six new school resource officers.

The board approved the request 5 to 0 with two members, including Chairman Marshall Ecker, absent. But some members were concerned about what it will cost to pay the officers' salaries in the years to come.

The sheriff has formed a committee within his department dedicated to finding grant money and additional funding for the initiative, which will cost more than $1 million.

Supervisor Tim Barber says they are exploring every option to make sure schools are safe.

"We're working with the school system, with the sheriff's department, with the county to try jointly to do something with the school initiative to make schools safer. This is just the start of the process to see what we can do and where it can go from here," said Barber.

Board members hope to have funds left over at the end of the year to fund metal detectors, surveillance cameras and other pieces of the initiative.