Madison – Today Representative Spiros (R-Marshfield) voted with his colleagues to pass, with bipartisan support, legislation to improve school safety in Wisconsin. The legislation is part of the special session called for by Governor Walker.

One of the provisions passed by the State Assembly today creates a $100 million grant under the Department of Justice to develop upgrades for schools. This is a significant investment that will allow schools to enact safety measures such as restricted entrances and metal detectors.

“I have taken some time over the past several weeks to speak to each of the superintendents in my district to learn what we as legislators can do to help them keep their schools safe” Spiros said. “One of my biggest takeaways was that our schools needs help, but they also need the flexibility to decide what their greatest needs are. Each and every school district has different needs, and these grants will allow them to determine what is best for their schools”

Another provision in the bill, authored by Rep. Spiros, creates an Office of School Safety at the Department of Justice that would have a number of responsibilities, including coordinating with the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) to create model practices for school safety, as well as offering training to school staff on school safety; update our laws. Other provisions include mandatory reporting of imminent threats of violence, the creation of a school safety hotline, and a prohibition on a criminal being able to profit from his or her crimes.

Assembly Bill 843 has already been passed by the Senate and will now be sent to Governor Walker for his signature. Assembly Bill 1031 will go to the Senate to be passed before being sent to the Governor.

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