WSP Burns Through $1.5M in Two Weeks For State Capitol Security
“How much money would we as a country be willing to spend to go back to Jan. 6 and take the assault on our nation’s Capitol out of our history books?”
--Washington State Patrol spokesman Chris Loftis
There has been a $1,500,000 bill racked up in just over two weeks by the Washington State Patrol in personnel and overtime costs providing extra security for the state Capitol in Olympia, and at a WSP news conference today, it was announced that the price tag is expected to significantly rise.
The $1.5 million in expenses does NOT include the temporary fencing that was erected around the legislative campus, NOR the mounting tally incurred since January 11 in the activating and maintaining 750 members of the National Guard. More than $1 million of the money has been paid in overtime and there were no specific numbers given regarding the total amount of officers guarding the Capitol, other than it was "in the hundreds."
WSP spokesman Chris Loftis defended the expenses saying it's money well spent to make sure there is stability and calm in Olympia, using the riot and assault on Congress in Washington D.C. exactly two weeks ago today, as an example to illustrate the need for prudent procedures and extra precautions in volatile times. Moreover, the simple fact is, the huge presence continues to keep the peace.
There are meetings scheduled by the end of the week on how much longer the enhanced security will remain in place. Moving forward, there is likely to be a more permanent change to overall security procedures at the Capitol.