Collaborative Reform Progress

On June 5, 2020, the City of Vallejo, entered into a three-year collaborative agreement with the California Department of Justice (Cal DOJ). As part of this collaboration, the Cal DOJ provides oversight, input, and feedback on Vallejo Police Department (VPD) reform efforts.  Namely, the Cal DOJ serves as an independent reviewer of VPD’s implementation of the 45 recommendations provided by the OIR Group. 

Through this collaborative effort, the VPD submits each plan, policy, or procedure that is proposed to meet the OIR Recommendations to Cal DOJ for its review.

Since Chief Williams' arrival in November 2019, the Vallejo PD has introduced several proposed policy changes to build stronger community partnerships, regain community trust, and establish principled policing practices based on our new mission, vision, and values statement

One important part of this effort to implement the OIR Recommendations is the effort to review and update VPD policies relating to the OIR Recommendations.  Cal DOJ has been working diligently with the City on this effort.

The process for reviewing proposed policy changes can be described as follows:

  • City/VPD draft new updated VPD policy
  • Solicit and receive feedback from CalDOJ on proposed updated/new policy
  •   Revision of policy as appropriate 
  •  Solicit and receive feedback on policy from all Vallejo Police Department members
  • Solicit and receive community feedback from proposed revised/new policy – As each draft policy is released for community input, they will be posted on myvallejo.com
  • Chief of Police and command staff review feedback received and incorporate any modifications to the proposed policy
  • Meet and confer with labor unions and police associations as required by the City’s Labor Agreements (MOU) and existing California labor laws
  • City, Department, and labor groups reach a consensus on policy changes or if consensus cannot be reached proceed to the impasse process established under California labor law
  • VPD Professional Standards Division incorporates the policy changes into the policy database and publishes the final policy (VPD Manual) for public consumption

The process outlined above, while time-consuming results in updated/new policies that: (1) meet the goals and intent of the OIR Recommendations; (2) provide for a comprehensive review with important community and other stakeholder input; (3) meet legal requirements dictated by California Labor Law; and (4) result in policies that serve to establish clear requirements for VPD personnel, ensure accountability and serve to protect the community and VPD members. 

How We Measure Our Success

The Cal DOJ uses Compliance Measures to evaluate whether the VPD has met expectations for substantial compliance relating to the implementation of the 45 OIR Recommendations. Each of the 45 OIR Recommendations has approximately two to nine compliance measures for each recommendation.  These clearly defined markers give the City/VPD and the community a clear understanding of the steps needed to achieve substantial compliance with each of the OIR Recommendations. 

While the VPD is given flexibility on how to best attain substantial compliance, there are specific goals that must be achieved within each recommendation. It is also important to note that substantial compliance does not mean that the response to the recommendation must be perfect or completed.  A significant number of recommendations contain compliance measures that will require ongoing review and improvement going forward and beyond the scope of the three-year time frame of the City’s collaborative agreement with Cal DOJ.  In those instances, having a plan or process in place that describes how the VPD will continue with those ongoing reviews, improvement loops, and audits will be critical to achieving not only substantial compliance with the recommendation but as a way to institutionalize the approach to reform. 

This page will be updated periodically as additional progress on the overall collaborative reform process is achieved.