By David Pan 

City to install new cameras at City Hall


Last updated 3/16/2022 at 10:55am

Visitors to City Hall should prepare to be in the spotlight.

The City plans to add six new cameras, replace one camera, and add a new digital recorder in an effort to combat increased vandalism in and around City Hall.

Public Works Director Matt Nienhuis explained the City’s motivation is upgrading its current exterior security camera system during the council’s Monday, March 14, worksession.

“Over the last year, we’ve had quite the amount of vandalism here at City Hall – both windows and catalytic converters, windows multiple times,” Nienhuis said. “We’ve had trouble seeing what’s happening with our current cameras. We only have three outside. … We would like to add some security cameras around the outside of City Hall, plus replace one existing camera. We also have to add a new additional video recorder to record everything.”

The City has spent $14,000 replacing windows and catalytic converters. The Police Department and Public Works also had to spend time responding to incidents, cleaning up vandalism, and coordinating repairs. Six of the cameras will be in new locations.

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“It’s definitely needed,” Council Vice President Elisabeth Crawford said. “… Within the last year, maybe it was two or three times that the windows on Harbour Pointe were broken.”

The current camera setup has some real gaps in security around the building, Nienhuis said.

“It also offers employees safety as well,” City Administrator Steve Powers said of the new cameras. “Not only just protecting our property, but helping to protect our employees.”

The proposal, which was supported by the council, will cost $30,000, though the City has applied for a $30,000 grant from Washington Cities Insurance Authority (WCIA). The City won’t know until later this month whether the grant was approved.

The proposal takes $30,000 from the Facility Renewal Fund and will reduce the projected ending fund balance of $692,978 by $30,000.

Johnson Controls, which handled the City’s fire and security systems, will provide the equipment, install it, and offer training. City staff will run the cables to help keep rates down.

Most of the equipment will be purchased through a national cooperative purchasing contract, which means the City will be able to purchase products at a lower cost than bidding individually.

The project is expected to be approved at the March 21 council meeting.


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