MILITARY EQUIPMENT FUNDING, ACQUISITION, AND USE POLICY (AB 481)
On September 30, 2021, Governor Newsom signed a series of eight (8) policing reform legislation aimed at increasing transparency of peace officer misconduct records and creates a system to decertify peace officers for serious misconduct, improving policing responsibility and accountability guidelines, raising eligibility standards, banning harmful restraint techniques, and creates a public forum for the funding, acquisition and use of military equipment.
AB 481 was authored by Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco) to address the funding, acquisition and use of military equipment.
AB 481 Definition of Military Equipment
The Assembly Bill has designated the following categories of items as military equipment. The Buena Park Police Department has equipment that meets the criteria for 12 of the 15 categories (categories 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12):
- Equipment Category 1 - Unmanned, remotely piloted, powered aerial or ground vehicles.
- Equipment Category 2 - Mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles or armored personnel carriers.
- Equipment Category 3 - High mobility multipurpose wheeled vehicles (HMMWV), two-and-one-half-ton trucks, five-ton trucks, or wheeled vehicles that have a breaching or entry apparatus attached.
- Equipment Category 4 - Tracked armored vehicles that provide ballistic protection to their occupants.
- Equipment Category 5 - Command and control vehicles that are either built or modified to facilitate the operational control and direction of public safety units.
- Equipment Category 6 - Weaponized aircraft, vessels, or vehicles of any kind.
- Equipment Category 7 - Battering rams, slugs, and breaching apparatuses that are explosive in nature.
- Equipment Category 8 - Firearms and ammunition of .50 caliber or greater, excluding standard-issue shotguns and standard-issue shotgun ammunition.
- Equipment Category 9 - Specialized firearms and ammunition of less than .50 caliber, including firearms and accessories identified as assault weapons in Penal Code § 30510 and Penal Code §30515, with the exception of standard-issue handguns.
- Equipment Category 10 - Any firearm or firearm accessory that is designed to launch explosive projectiles.
- Equipment Category 11 - Noise-flash diversionary devices and explosive breaching tools.
- Equipment Category 12 - Munitions containing tear gas or OC, excluding standard, service-issued handheld pepper spray.
- Equipment Category 13 - TASER® Shockwave, microwave weapons, water cannons, and long-range acoustic devices.
- Equipment Category 14 - Kinetic energy weapons and munitions.
- Equipment Category 15 - Any other equipment as determined by a governing body or a state agency to require additional oversight.
The full text of AB 481 is available here.
Requirements of AB 481
The ordinance related to AB 481 is scheduled to go before the Buena Park City Council, Tuesday, April 8, 2023 at 5:00 PM.
To help guide this process, BPPD has crafted a summary of AB 481 for our residents, as well as the following required materials:
- Buena Park Police Department’s draft Policy 409 is available to view here. The AB 481 defined list of military equipment currently in BPPD’s possession is included in the draft policy, as well as each items purpose, authorized use, expected lifespan and fiscal impact
- Establish a concern or complaint process. For many years, BPPD has had a means for the public to submit commendations, questions and complaints. Additional information can be found on our Community Feedback page.
- Prepare an Annual Report to include the use of military equipment, any complaints received, any internal audits or other information about violations of BPPD Policy 409, the cost of such use and other similar information. This webpage will be utilized for distribution of any updates to the above materials as well as for the Annual Report. The first Annual Report will be distributed on or around July, 2023.
To help guide this process, and create transparency for our community, Buena Park Police Department established this webpage to provide all required materials including draft policy, current applicable equipment, and full text of the bill.
409 - Military Equipment Use
City of Buena Park Adopted City Ordinance No. 1706
Questions and Comments
Information regarding AB 481 can be requested from the Buena Park Police Department at
NOTE: Buena Park Police Department has not obtained, nor does it utilize, any equipment procured from the United States Department of Defense through the Law Enforcement Support Program (also known as the 1028 or 1033 program).
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