Kamloops preparing to join Kelowna with public surveillance cameras | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Kamloops preparing to join Kelowna with public surveillance cameras

City of Kamloops is debating installing a closed circuit security camera system to combat crime.
September 12, 2021 - 8:34 AM

As small businesses continue to fall victim to crime in Kamloops, there is a growing interest in the idea of installing closed circuit security cameras in public places.

Kamloops city councillor Bill Sarai said the idea was discussed in a council meeting in March in response to hundreds of downtown and North Shore businesses expressing interest. 

"The model we were proposing to do was to give out funding to the North Shore Business Improvement Association," Sarai said. "They would identify certain businesses in common areas of crime and mount cameras there. The cameras would tie into an RCMP inventory so the police could access footage of those cameras."

Council is currently at a discussion phase about the cost of renting or purchasing cameras, while the business association is exploring its own opportunities. 

Jeremy Heighton is the Executive Director of the business association.

"We are in conversation with a team at Telus," he said. "We are looking to see if there is an opportunity to put a block wide camera system around the 400-block on Tranquille Road, which is a common area for crime. It is very preliminary at this point, but we are starting to look into some options."

The City of Kelowna has used surveillance cameras for years in places like its parkades and around city buildings. It did field complaints from B.C.’s Privacy Commissioner at one time but those have since been resolved.

READ MOREMcDONALD: Surveillance cameras in Kelowna? Show us why we need the eye in the sky.

Sarai said for now, council will be letting Kelowna take the lead before making more steps toward a camera program, as they don't want to spend money on legal issues.

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