The M14 still serves an important role, in the military and even the police world. The platform is proven in the field, accurate, reliable and remains one of the best choices in a 7.62x51mm tactical rifle. It is the personal choice of many professionals, which is why the military and many law enforcement departments still issue them.
Available to police agencies on a government surplus program, an law enforcement agency can acquire them on loan from the federal government. As the new M110 rifle is fielded by the U.S. military, these rifles are becoming more available to agencies again. It gives those agencies requiring something bigger than a 5.56mm as an affordable alternative. Like the venerable 1911 pistol, the M14 platform is simple, reliable and proven in all conditions. They operate dirty, wet, muddy, and tuned properly they can be incredibly accurate. Another option is the excellent Springfield Armory M1A, a semi-automatic variant of the revered M14 weapon system.
In fact, the M1A has proven to be quite popular in the LE tactical community today. They are in comparison, a bit heavier than a 5.56mm, and given the use of a standard stock, a bit less “tactical.” There are a few stocks out there that accommodate an M16-style stock and some that fold or collapse, but they also have their issues. As a rule they make a heavy gun even heavier, and they can require a gunsmith to install. Having fielded them all, running one in a CQB environment is not for the faint of heart. Compared to a short M16 or equivalent, it is downright hard work.