Assembly Bill 481 Military Equipment Use Policy

Virtual Community Meeting to discuss AB 481: Military Equipment Funding, Acquisition and Use

The Concord Police Department (CPD) will be hosting a Virtual Community Meeting to discuss AB 481: Military Equipment Funding, Acquisition and Use on Thursday, March 24, 2022, from 6:00 – 7:30 PM.

The meeting topics will include:

- Purpose of the new legislation - Definition of military equipment - CPD military equipment inventory - CPD proposed equipment funding, acquisition and use Lexipol Policy - Annual report requirement - Community engagement and public access to materials

Military Equipment Funding, Acquisition and Use Policy

AB 481 was authored by Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco) to address the funding, acquisition and use of Military Equipment by law enforcement agencies. The Assembly Bill creates more transparency, oversight, and accountability in the use and acquisition of police equipment which qualifies by definition as Military Equipment. On September 30, 2021, Governor Newsom signed AB 481 into law. The full text of AB 481 is available here.

AB 481 Definition of Military Equipment

The Assembly Bill has designated the following 15 categories of items as military equipment:

  • Unmanned, remotely piloted, powered aerial or ground vehicles (Category 1).
  • Mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles or armored personnel carriers (Category 2).
  • 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 (Category 3).
  • Tracked armored vehicles that provide ballistic protection to their occupants (Category 4).
  • Command and control vehicles that are either built or modified to facilitate the operational control and direction of public safety units (Category 5).
  • Weaponized aircraft, vessels, or vehicles of any kind (Category 6).
  • Battering rams, slugs, and breaching apparatuses that are explosive in nature (Category 7).
  • Firearms and ammunition of .50 caliber or greater, excluding standard-issue shotguns and standard-issue shotgun ammunition (Category 8).
  • 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 service weapons (Category 9).
  • Any firearm or firearm accessory that is designed to launch explosive projectiles (Category 10).
  • Noise-flash diversionary devices and explosive breaching tools (Category 11).
  • Munitions containing tear gas or OC, excluding standard, service-issued handheld pepper spray (Category 12).
  • TASER® Shockwave, microwave weapons, water cannons, and long-range acoustic devices (Category 13).
  • Kinetic energy weapons and munitions (Category 14).
  • Any other equipment as determined by a governing body or a state agency to require additional oversight (Category 15).

Requirements of AB 481

AB 481 requires each law enforcement agency's governing body to adopt a written Military Equipment Use Policy by ordinance in a public forum in order to continue the use of previously acquired Military Equipment, and commence this process by May 1, 2022. To help guide this process, CPD has provided a summary of AB 481 for our community members, as well as the following required materials:

  • CPD Draft Lexipol Policy 706 is available to view here . CPD’s Military Equipment Inventory per AB 481 is included in the draft policy.
  • Establish a concern or complaint process. CPD already has a means for the public to submit concerns or complaints. Additional information is available here
  • Prepare an Annual Report to include the use of Military Equipment, any complaints received, any internal audits or other information about violations of CPD Lexipol Policy 706, the cost of such use and other similar information.

Public Input Regarding AB 481

In compliance with AB 481 and for transparency, CPD has uploaded multiple written documents on this webpage 30-days prior to a public meeting to meet the requirements of AB 481.

In addition, CPD has created a meaningful public forum for CPD to receive comments regarding AB 481.

  1. Participate in the Virtual Community Meeting on Thursday, March 24, 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. The meeting topics will include:
  • Purpose of the new legislation
  • Definition of Military Equipment
  • CPD Military Equipment Inventory
  • CPD proposed equipment funding, acquisition and use policy
  • Annual report requirement
  • Community engagement and public access to materials

To participate, log into Zoom and join the discussion.

    2. The Staff Report and proposed Ordinance is planned for consideration at the April 12, 2022, City Council meeting.            Public comment on this Agenda Item will be available.