The FY 2012 Bulletproof Vest Partnership (BVP) Program application period opened May 16 and will close June 27. Through the program, states, local government and tribal governments are reimbursed up to 50 percent of the cost of each unit of eligible body armor purchased for law enforcement officers. Agencies can purchase the best protection available, meeting the needs of their officers, as long as the vests are compliant with the latest National Institute of Justice (NIJ) standards at the time of purchase. Since January 1, 2012, 12 officers have been saved because they were wearing a protective vest when assaulted. Of those saves, four vests were purchased with assistance from the BVP Program, the best return on investment any funding can obtain for officers, their families, and the community.
To plan for your 2012 application, take the following steps: check prior-year BVP funds in the BVP system to ensure balances have been expended and requests for payments have been submitted; check your jurisdiction and contact information in the BVP system and update if needed; be sure that the vests you intend to purchase are on the NIJ-compliant list; and have a written mandatory wear policy in place when the application is submitted. FY 2012 BVP funds can only be used for vests ordered after April 1, 2012. Contact the BVP Helpdesk at (877) 758-3787 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions regarding the application process and eligibility.