Panic button alert bill clears House - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Panic button alert bill clears House

Rep. Scott Baltz, D-Pocahontas (Source: Arkansas State House) Rep. Scott Baltz, D-Pocahontas (Source: Arkansas State House)
LITTLE ROCK, AR (KAIT) -

A college student would be able to push a button on their cell phone and contact emergency officials almost instantaneously, under a bill approved Monday in the state House. 

The House voted 61-9, with seven present, to approve House Bill 1897, sponsored by Rep. Scott Baltz, D-Pocahontas. 

In discussing the bill, Baltz said students would be able to sign up for the program once they register for classes. The system, which is based on a program approved by the legislature in 2015 for school districts, would also allow a student to record an incident if an emergency were to happen. Also, dispatchers would be able to get a GPS location of a person if an emergency happens.  

Baltz said the program is voluntary. 

The bill now heads to the Senate. 

If approved and signed into law, the system would take effect during the 2017-2018 school year. 

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