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Landis Police Department gets grant for new bulletproof vests

LANDIS — Landis Police Department Capt. Roger Hosey says the average lifetime for a bulletproof vest is five years.

“That’s what they claim, because it’s Kevlar and the tightness of the weave is, I guess, what provides the protection. And then just moisture from wear and whatnot loosens the fibers,” Hosey said.

That’s one of the reasons, he said, that it is important to replace vests regularly.

At the Landis Board of Alderman meeting Monday night, Landis said the department has received a matching grant from the U.S. Department of Justice for 12 new bulletproof vests.

“All of the vests are fitted to a particular officer,” Hosey said. “So if you have new officers and you don’t have funding for vests, then they’ve got to wear hand-me-downs, and that’s pretty precarious if the vest doesn’t fit right. It doesn’t provide the best protection that it could have for him.”

Hosey said the vest he wears when he’s on duty expired in 2014.

“And I think, out of everybody we’ve got full time, we have maybe two that aren’t expired that are getting ready to expire,” Hosey said.

Hosey said the bulletproof vests average $700.

But he said that with the federal grant, a North Carolina League of Municipalities grant and a donation from the Woodmen of the World, he’s hoping that the department won’t have to pay anything out-of-pocket for the new vests.

“We’re pretty excited about it,” Hosey said.

The vests will go to the department’s 10 full-time police officers and to its two most active reserve officers.

Other items on the agenda Monday included:

• Lindsey Van Wingerden made a presentation to the board about the Landis Beer and Wine Festival.

Van Wingerden and her father, Mike Wallace, spoke to the board and residents about the property that Wallace bought — Corriher Mill — and the festival that Van Wingerden is planning.

Wallace said his purpose in buying the 37-acre property was a “financial investment that hopefully will make us money someday down the road.”

“We’re trying to find positive businesses to go in or positive ideas that can help the city. I like this little place,” Wallace said.

Wallace said he hopes the festival Van Wingerden is organizing will be “the start of many things that we have in mind.”

The Landis Beer and Wine Festival will be from noon to 6 p.m. Dec. 9 on Main Street.

“The idea was to bring something unique and fun that’s in a safe environment to the town of Landis,” Van Wingerden said.

Part of the proceeds will go toward a children’s charity, which Van Wingerden said she will identify later this week.

• The board unanimously approved a petition requesting voluntary annexation for part of a property.

The petition was from New Life Developers LLC.

The property is about 1.9 acres and is at the northeast intersection of Flat Rock and Mount Moriah Church roads.

The part of the property that is outside Landis town limits — and which the petitioners wish to have annexed — is about 0.8 acres.

• Board members thanked town staff members and the community for helping to make the Oct. 21 Fall Festival a success.

Mayor Mike Mahaley said he estimated that between 1,800 and 2,000 people attended.

He said the town is planning another festival next year that will be “a little bigger and better.”

Contact reporter Jessica Coates at 704-797-4222.

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