August 13, 2014
ISLE OF WIGHT — To keep Isle of Wight Sheriff’s deputies looking sharp and safe, the county has allotted $30,500 for the Sheriff’s Office to outfit its 49 deputies.
That includes covering costs for uniforms for new deputies and replacement uniforms that get worn out or damaged. Sheriff Mark Marshall said a new deputy typically costs more because they have to outfit him or her mostly from scratch, but the department recycles patches, holsters, belts, spare shirts and other pieces of the deputies uniform whenever possible.
Each deputy takes about $2,500 to outfit when it’s all said and done, including winter and rain gear.
Marshall said a significant portion of the overall apparel budget is for protective gear – the bulletproof vests that the department mandates deputies wear whenever they are on patrol.
The vests cost around $600 apiece and are sized and fitted individually for each deputy. Marshall said that every day wear, including sweating in the vests, degrades the Kevlar that helps diffuse the force of a bullet impact.
The vests are on a continuous replacement cycle – each vest is replaced when the 5 year warranty runs out. The department replaces between 10 and 15 vests in a given year.