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New security measures going into place at Arizona Legislature

PHOENIX — The Arizona Legislature is adding security measures to its buildings, but the House and Senate disagree on what that entails.

House Speaker David Gowan (R-Sierra Vista) said Thursday anyone entering that building will be screened at metal detectors. Gowan also said the process would only add up to 20 seconds per visitor.

Creating new entry points, equipment, gun lockers and other security upgrades will cost about $290,000.

Construction was to begin by the end of October and last until the end of November.

The Senate’s plan was less aggressive and less expensive. For starters, there will be no metal detectors.

Chief of Staff Wendy Baldo said entryways were being remodeled so security would be able to see who is coming in. Protective film was being added over the entryway glass and extra video cameras were being installed.

That plan will cost around $70,000.

Baldo said metal detectors were rejected because they would interfere with public access.

Gowan said in a statement the changes at the House building were necessary “in light of the global increase in attacks on public venues” and that the upgrades would “strike a balance between providing for public safety and allowing ‘The People’s House’ to remain accessible to the public.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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