Bulletproofing San Antonio: City Budget Invests in Police Safety

Bulletproofing San Antonio: A strange thing has been added to San Antonio’s new city budget: armed security. This decision was made after several killings of local police officers in the past month.

In the Fiscal Year 2024 budget, $210,000 will be spent to repair the windshields and side glass on 30 cars used by special units like SWAT and the Street Crimes squad. The suggested change also asked for $1,540,000 for the budget for Fiscal Year 2025.

Michael Wanke, president of A1 Glass Coating, talked about these options’ value and cost. His business specializes in putting coats and films on glass surfaces resistant to bullets and break-ins. Even if the movie isn’t really bulletproof, it can slow down people trying to break glass.

Wanke’s staff has been busy putting bullet-resistant coats on glass at the SAPD’s St. Mary’s site to show a growing need for more security.

But, as Wanke said, protective film can’t be used on vehicles yet because windshields and car windows are curved. Most limits have to do with how thick a film can be used on cars.

Even though this will help keep officers safe, Erika Salazar and other gun safety advocates say San Antonio needs more thorough, long-term answers to its gun safety problems. Officer safety is essential, but Salazar, a Bexar County Gun Safety Coalition trustee, wants answers that will last.

Wanke thinks this project is an excellent idea to buy people time when things are dangerous. He says a thicker layer can give you more time before a possible thief can get in.

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