Legislative Alert: U.S. President Trump Issues Order Restoring Unrestricted Law Enforcement Access to Surplus Equipment

On August 28, 2017, U.S. President Donald Trump issued an Executive Order, “Restoring State, Tribal, and Local Law Enforcement’s Access to Life-Saving Equipment and Resources,” which restores the full scope of the U.S. Department of Defense’s surplus military property acquisition program (1033) and removes any requirements under former U.S. President Barack Obama’s Executive Order 13688 for grants used to purchase equipment from other federal departments and agencies, such as the U.S. Departments of Justice and Homeland Security.

Equipment provided through the 1033 program is a critical component of law enforcement agencies’ inventory, especially as fiscal challenges have mounted and other sources of equipment and funding have diminished. Law enforcement agencies often rely on equipment acquired through this program to conduct a variety of law enforcement operations including hostage rescue, special operations, disaster assistance, response to threats of terrorism, and fugitive apprehension.