JONESBOROUGH, Tenn. (WJHL) – Republican Tennessee Senator Marsha Blackburn spoke on a new school safety bill at a luncheon in Jonesborough.

Blackburn gave her remarks at the McKinney Center during the Washington County Federated Republican Women event Monday.

The senator discussed her latest bill, the SAFE Schools Act, which would create $900 million in grant opportunities for public and private schools to invest in school safety. That includes money to train and hire retired veterans and law enforcement officers as school safety officers.

“$900 million in grants so that our sheriffs’ departments could hire or work with retired military, retired law enforcement who know how to use weapons, who know how to de-escalate situations,” Blackburn said.

Under the bill, schools would also be able to apply for grant funding for teacher training, additional building security, conducting threat assessments and purchasing equipment for school safety officers.

Blackburn filed the bill with fellow Tennessee Senator Bill Hagerty.

“I re-filed this bill,” Blackburn said. “It is time to pass.”

Blackburn also spoke out against several Biden administration actions, saying Republicans in Congress are fighting against the administration daily. She said Biden has been weak on foreign policy with Russia, China and Iran.

“Our enemies need to fear us, and they don’t,” Blackburn said.

She also criticized what she called a lack of action on the Southern border, which she said has allowed for human and drug trafficking.

“Fentanyl that is ravaging our communities, women and children that are being trafficked into the sex trade, and nothing gets done,” Blackburn said.

Blackburn said Republicans taking back the U.S. House has allowed for some incremental wins, but she hopes the 2024 election will be a big one for Republicans.

“It is going to be imperative that we keep the U.S. House, and we have to take the U.S. Senate,” Blackburn said.

Blackburn is up for re-election in 2024, but the presidency will also be decided then.

She made no mention of former President Donald Trump’s indictment or any Republican candidates for president.

“We have to make certain that there is a Republican in the White House,” Blackburn said.

Blackburn did not speak to the media after the event.