Texas school district creates own police force to be equipped with 9 Tesla cruisers
“The biggest priority here is to make sure our students and staff are safe, and we’re protecting their security at all times,” Eanes ISD Superintendent Jeff Arnett said
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By Joanna Putman
AUSTIN, Texas — A Texas school district announced it will form its own police department and equip its fleet with nine Tesla Model Y’s as cruisers, CBS Austin reported.
The Eanes Independent School District board voted unanimously to spend $1.7 million on a new police department. The department will allow schools to comply with a new Texas state law requiring one armed security officer on every school campus.
“We met last week with representatives from the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement, they reviewed our application,” Superintendent Jeff Arnett said. “It appears everything is in order.”
Arnett says the 11 police staff are currently working as peace officers for the district.
The school board paused a vote last month on whether to accept a $400,000 offer to equip the department with nine Tesla Model Y’s when it received public backlash, according to the report.
Arnett defended the idea of accepting the Tesla offer, saying that the vehicles would not be luxury cars and that purchasing and equipping many other commonly used cruiser models would be more expensive. The Tesla’s would also be available in 60 days, whereas a shortage of other models meant other brands may have taken six to 12 months.
“If we have an instance on our campus where we need our police department to come, I would hate for it to be an issue for them not to be able to get there,” board member Heather Sheffield said in the meeting.
The department will be purchasing the Tesla’s for $42,000 each and equipping them for about $7,000 each.
“The biggest priority here is to make sure our students and staff are safe, and we’re protecting their security at all times,” Arnett said.