The city has approved the purchase of iPads and ballistic shields for the Sandy Springs Police Department through an annual grant program.

The Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant Program is a source of federal funding from the Office of Justice Programs to state and local jurisdictions.

For 2019, Sandy Springs was given $11,389, based on the population and crime statistics of the city, according to city documents.

With the approval of the council at a Sept. 3 meeting, the SSPD will now send in an application for the allocation of the funds.

Pending approval of the application, the SSPD will spend $2,273 of the funds to purchase six iPad mini computers for the City Springs district bike patrol officers. 

The bike beat includes not only City Springs, but the larger downtown district. The officers ride as far south as Cliftwood Drive and as far east as Boylston Drive.

iPads would give officers the ability to work away from their vehicles but still answer calls for service, according to Deputy Chief Keith Zgonc.

“It would make things a little more efficient for them,” Zgonc said at the meeting.

The other $9,200 will be used to purchase four ballistic shields “in order to be certain that officers are fully prepared for an emergency response call involving an active shooter,” city documents read.

The request for comes after two officer-involved shootings in May of last year, one in which officers crouched behind shields as they approached the suspect holding a gun.