Sparks City Council Meeting 12/14/2020 2:00:00 PM

Meeting Link:
Meeting Dial-in #: 1-669-900-6833 Meeting ID: 98232307536

General Business: 9.10

Title: Consideration, discussion, and possible approval of a new five-year agreement (AC-5718) with Axon Enterprises, Inc., for the purchase and maintenance of Body-Worn Cameras (BWC), Fleet Cameras, Tasers, and Interview Rooms in the total amount of $2,236,108.06.
Petitioner/Presenter: Chris Crawforth, Police Chief/Chris Crawforth, Police Chief
Recommendation: Purchase of the BWC and Fleet camera systems from Axon Enterprise, Inc.
Financial Impact: N/A
Total Costs: $2,236,108.06
Fund: Sparks Grants & Donations Fund    Account: 603445
Program: Body Camera Mandate SB 176 (090218)
Amount: $2,236,108.06    Budget Status: Over Budget (See Budget Correction Plan)
Budget Correction Plan:
$1,850,000 will be funded by city and the city will request reimbursement from Washoe County for use of E911 funds as has currently occurred with BWC and Fleet costs. Interview Room costs are already budgeted in the Police Budget. Taser costs will be budgeted in the police budget for FY22, no costs for Tasers will be encumbered in FY21.
Business Impact (Per NRS 237):
A Business Impact Statement is not required because this is not a rule.
Agenda Item Brief:

NRS 289.830 requires uniformed peace officers in Nevada to wear body-worn cameras (BWC) when contacting the public. Axon Enterprises, Inc. (Axon), is the Sparks Police Department's (SPD) vendor for both BWC and vehicle cameras (Fleet). SPD is currently in year three of the existing five-year contract with Axon. The proposed contract would replace the existing contract, have a new term of five years, and build upon SPD's current BWC and Fleet program by adding cameras in interview rooms and replacing aging Tasers. The enhanced 911 telephone line surcharge fund (E911 fund) managed by Washoe County may be used to purchase and maintain BWC and Fleet. Staff anticipates BWC and Fleet costs in the amount of $1,766,402.70 over the five-year contract term will be reimbursed from the E911 fund, as has occurred in the past. Taser and interview room costs of $469,705.36 over the five-year term would be paid by the City.


In 2017, the Nevada Legislature adopted NRS 289.830, which requires every uniformed peace officer who routinely interacts with the public to wear a body-worn camera (BWC), effective July 1, 2018. The Legislature also expanded the permissible uses of the enhanced 911 telephone line surcharge fund (E911 fund), managed by Washoe County, to include the purchase and maintenance of BWC and vehicle cameras (Fleet).

After the Legislature's action, in 2018, the Washoe County 911 Emergency Response Advisory Committee and Board of County Commissioners adopted policy regarding appropriate uses of the E911 fund. That policy permits E911 funds to be used to purchase and maintain BWC and Fleet, but not related products or services. The policy also increased the 911 surcharge from $.25 to $.85 per telephone line. 

Prior to the effective date of NRS 289.830, the City of Sparks, City of Reno, and Washoe County explored various options for BWC vendors. The three jurisdictions together decided to join the State of Nevada's existing contract with Axon Enterprise, Inc. (Axon), for BWC and related equipment. Joining the State's existing contract satisfied the "sole source" exceptions to competitive bidding requirements as described in NRS 332.115. As a result of the City's joining this contract, Axon has been the vendor for the Sparks Police Department's BWC and Fleet since 2018.

The City's original contract with Axon was for a term of five years, scheduled to expire in 2023. However, since approval of the existing contract in 2018, Axon has developed additional products and services that would help Sparks Police Department continue to pursue transparency and effective law enforcement. In addition, Sparks Police Department's Tasers are aging and need to be replaced. Axon is the manufacturer of Tasers. Therefore, staff proposes that the City Council approve a new five-year contract with Axon to address these issues as discussed in greater detail below.


The proposed contract provides for continued use, maintenance, and upgrades of BWC and Fleet, including use of, Axon's secure website for storage, management, and dissemination of video footage from BWC and Fleet, photographs, and other evidence that can be stored digitally. In addition, the proposed contract provides for Tasers and cameras for interview rooms used by detectives when interviewing witnesses and suspects. Using Axon equipment for all of these functions improves Sparks Police Department's operations because officers and non-sworn personnel need only familiarize themselves with a single, integrated platform for all video evidence, no matter the source. In addition, Axon has implemented improvements to their technology to improve transparency and officer safety. For example, in the event an officer draws his or her service weapon, the BWC will automatically activate and begin recording. In addition, Axon equipment is equipped with GPS technology, enabling better coordination of officers' movements and locating officers in the event of injury. Finally, Sparks Police Department's Tasers are aging and need to be replaced. Tasers are important less-than-lethal tools, and it is essential that they function as designed.

Like the original contract, this proposed contract falls within the sole source exception to competitive bidding requirements outlined in NRS 332.115. Sparks Police Department is already equipped with Axon BWC and Fleet, and interview rooms were included in the existing contract. Regarding the Taser portion of the proposed contract, the City of Sparks would choose to standardize these materials and services as allowed under state and local procurement law in addition to sole source allowances. NRS 332.115 allows the City to contract for products or services without competitive bidding in the following circumstances:

  • "Additions to and repairs and maintenance of equipment which may be more efficiently added to, repaired or maintained by a certain person," NRS 332.115(1)(c); and
  • "Equipment which, by reason of the training of the personnel or of an inventory of replacement parts maintained by the local government is compatible with existing equipment," NRS 332.115(1)(d).

Axon's products and services meet both of these exceptions.

The total cost for the proposed five-year contract is $2,236,108.06. However, the City has received reimbursement from the E911 fund for past BWC and Fleet expenses and anticipates such reimbursements will be forthcoming under this new contract. The City of Sparks, through the Sparks Police Department, will pay the first-year expense of the contract and will request the Washoe County 911 Emergency Response Advisory Committee recommends the Board of County Commissioners approve reimbursement to the City of Sparks for the first year of the contract for BWC and Fleet costs only, $370,368.00. Future BWC and Fleet annual expenses and related costs will be submitted through the same process for reimbursement.

Year 1 Interview Room costs, $18,163.12, are already budgeted in the City’s budget for FY21. Year 1 costs for Tasers have been moved to Years 2 through 5 to allow the City to budget for this cost, $93,600 annually over those four years.  



1. Council could approve the agreement and purchase as outlined by staff.

2. Council could reject the agreement and purchase recommendation and give further direction to the City Manager.

Recommended Motion:

I move to approve a new five-year agreement (AC-5718) with Axon Enterprises, Inc., for the purchase and associated maintenance of Body-Worn Cameras, Fleet Cameras, Tasers, and Interview Rooms in the total amount of $2,236,108.06

Attached Files:
     Sole Manufacturer_Axon Cameras and CEWs_ENG.PDF
     Sparks PD.pdf
     Sparks MSPA 2020-11-13.pdf
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