Hamlet Council Discusses Use of New Park Cameras

Hamlet Fall 5New security cameras have been installed in the Hamlet Town Park in recent months, but not everyone’s happy with the technology upgrade.

During Wednesday’s town council meeting, park volunteer Jim Cooley expressed concern with the new arrangement, in which only police officers can access the surveillance footage. “I don’t feel right calling 911 because a basketball got stolen or a kid’s bicycle came up missing,” Cooley said. “Before, with the old camera, we didn’t have any problem of getting somebody to come down there and kind of review the footage and what we could see with the old camera.”

Cooley said all town employees should be given access. He noted that there may be other uses for the cameras, such as tracking park usage to help with potential grant funding opportunities.

However, Town Attorney Martin Bedrock opposed that idea. “You don’t want too many people having access to it, or before you know it, it’ll be broken,” he said. “That’s how things get broken.”

Council members also agreed that the new cameras should be used strictly for security purposes. Council President Dave Kesvormas encouraged Cooley to work with Town Marshal Frank Lonigro, to allow the proper authorities to follow up on any incidents as they see necessary.

Lonigro says that his officers know how to access the footage. However, he plans to contact the company that installed the cameras to provide some additional training, so they can take advantage of all the system’s features.