Education

California bill requires hearings for school military gear

MRAP vehicles sit in the Redistribution Property Accountability Team (RPAT) yard at Kandahar Airfield (KAF) on March 8, 2014 near Kandahar, Afghanistan. A bill moving approved by the California State Assembly Thursday would mandate public hearings before schools accept military gear such as rifles and tanks.
MRAP vehicles sit in the Redistribution Property Accountability Team (RPAT) yard at Kandahar Airfield (KAF) on March 8, 2014 near Kandahar, Afghanistan. A bill moving approved by the California State Assembly Thursday would mandate public hearings before schools accept military gear such as rifles and tanks.
Scott Olson/Getty Images

A bill moving through the California Legislature would mandate public hearings before schools accept military gear such as rifles and tanks.

The Assembly on Thursday approved SB242 on a 59-13 vote. The legislation was introduced before President Barack Obama announced last month that his administration would stop providing some combat-style gear to local law enforcement.

State data shows six California school districts have taken military equipment. Los Angeles Unified School District recently returned three grenade launchers while keeping M16 rifles.

Democratic Assemblywoman Shirley Weber of San Diego says the bill would give parents a voice before the weapons appear in schools.

SB242 returns to the Senate for a vote on amendments. The Senate is also considering similar legislation requiring public hearings for police departments accepting tanks and large military gear.