The San Jose City Council late Tuesday approved a pilot program allowing police to use a drone.
Police under the one-year pilot will be able to use a drone only during hostage or search-and-rescue situations. The bomb squad will also have access to the police drone.
The $7,000 drone, which the police department acquired in 2014, has been at the center of debate and the focus of a series of community meetings over privacy concerns.
The pilot program now must be approved by the Federal Aviation Administration.
If approved by the FAA, police could start using the drone in 2017.