June 9, 2022

Young Joins Bill to Allow COVID Money to be Used to Harden Schools

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) joined Senator Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) to introduce the Safe Schools Act, legislation to allow COVID relief dollars allocated to schools through the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief (ESSER) Fund to be used by schools to harden themselves with physical security measures, such as locks, panic buttons, individual room security systems, video surveillance, and hiring and paying the salaries of armed school resource officers. 


The legislation will exempt expenses for school security improvements from current ESSER guidelines that require expenses to be related to COVID-19. 


“Many schools have unspent funds remaining from various COVID relief measures that could be used for school security measures. The Safe Schools Act is a commonsense step that will make it easier for schools to use these funds to better protect Hoosier students and teachers across Indiana,” said Senator Young.


“While we made some progress in previous legislation to make our schools stronger, harder, and safer, certainly there is more that can and must be done immediately to protect kids,” said Senator Marshall. “What happened in Uvalde was a horrific tragedy. While many have been quick to play politics, one thing we can all agree on is that Congress must act to harden schools. For these reasons, I am introducing this legislation that allows the abundance of unused COVID relief dollars to be allocated to secure schools in Kansas and throughout the nation.”


Senators Young and Marshall were joined by Senators Tim Scott (S.C.), Thom Tillis (N.C.), Steve Daines (Mont.), Rick Scott (Fla.), Chuck Grassley (Iowa), Mike Braun (Ind.), and Jerry Moran (Kan.) in introducing the legislation. 


Text of the bill is available here.