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Breaking News

Federal Military Surplus Property Program Available to Local Law Enforcement

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Texas Department of Public Safety
March 23, 2012, 3:30pm
2,391 views | 1 comment

AUSTIN - The 1033 Military Surplus Property Program is a federally-run program under the U.S. Department of Defense that allows law enforcement agencies from around the country to receive excess military property. The Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) is the program coordinator for Texas, serving only as a conduit between law enforcement agencies in Texas and the Department of Defense.

“The biggest misconception in recent media reporting regarding the Military Surplus Property Program is that the State of Texas has any say in where this equipment is distributed -- we do not,” said DPS Director Steven C. McCraw. “The federal government sends this equipment to agencies who have asked for it on a first come, first served basis. The equipment moves directly from the U.S. military to the participating agency. As the state coordinator for this program, DPS simply processes applications and initial requests for equipment using federal guidelines.”

DPS promotes the Military Surplus Property Program to law enforcement agencies within Texas. The program is available to all law enforcement agencies across the country, but an agency must first apply for the program and be approved by the federal government before gaining access to the equipment. In Texas, these applications are submitted through DPS, which forwards them to the federal government. Once an applicant is approved by the federal Defense Logistics Agency, that law enforcement agency may then go to the program website or military base to search for available surplused (used) military inventory.

Each participating agency has equal access to program equipment on a first come, first served basis. This is a nationwide program, so thousands of law enforcement agencies from all over the country are drawing from the same inventory. When a law enforcement agency obtains a piece of equipment, it passes directly from the U.S. military to the law enforcement recipient. DPS and the State of Texas have no decision-making power in the selection process and also never have physical possession of any of the equipment.

No initial costs are associated with obtaining this equipment. However, shipping or travel costs to the base for pickup, as well as any operation, repair and maintenance costs of the equipment, are the sole responsibility of the law enforcement recipient. The equipment is used and no longer functional for military purposes, so the condition of the equipment can vary. Therefore, agencies must also consider potential high maintenance and repair costs, and the specialized skills necessary to keep the equipment operational.

For more information on the program, visit: or

Your Opinions and Comments

Rock'n chair Rambler  
Over Taxed, TX  
March 28, 2012 9:18am
No wonder our local cops are starting to look like combat soldiers.... Wait until Holder gets wind of this and Texas cops will be lucky to receive surplus WWII pup tents.

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