NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- City Council members in New York City are calling for new bulletproof vests for New York's finest.
City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito announced Thursday that the new vests for NYPD cops will be one of the things council members will be pushing for in next year's budget.
"We must ensure that the brave men and women of the NYPD have all the resources they need to stay safe when they are out protecting New Yorkers," Mark-Viverito said in a statement. "Modern, reliable bulletproof vests will help ensure that police officers throughout the city are safe and the City Council is proud to support funding for this critical initiative which will help save lives."
City Council Proposes Funding For New Bulletproof Vests For NYPD Cops
The proposal would allocate $7.3 million for the 2016 fiscal year and additional funds in the future to replace existing bulletproof vests. Each vest costs about $600.
Patrolmen's Benevolent Association President Patrick Lynch said bulletproof vests "are essential to protecting the men and women who have dedicated their lives to keeping this city safe and we are grateful to the City Council for the funding."
"The PBA has continuously worked over the years with the department and in cooperation with the Council to upgrade vests to the highest level of protection available for our members," Lynch said in a statement. "But the work is not done with the purchase of these vests. The PBA is still pushing the department and city to establish a permanent funding source to support a regular replacement program for vests as their warranty dates expire. It is essential to our member's safety."
Mayor Bill de Blasio said he supports the proposal.
"The speaker informed me that she's going to make that request formally as part of the budget process, I think it's a very good idea, I support it and we'll put that right into the budget process for this upcoming year," said de Blasio, who will propose his preliminary budget for the 2016 fiscal year later this month.
"We want to obviously make sure the resources are there so that our officers have the best protective capacity," de Blasio said. "This is an investment we would make in this budget and then continue to add as needed to ensure people are safe."
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