Council approves body cameras for Walterboro police officers | News | The Press and Standard
by The Press and Standard | April 15, 2016 5:00 am
Last Updated: April 13, 2016 at 2:38 pm
Walterboro police officers will soon have new body-worn cameras.
City Council unanimously approved $52,026.20 to purchase 30 body cameras for the Walterboro Police Department at the March 5 meeting. The price tag includes the equipment, software, installation and training. Once purchased, the cameras will be in use in 6-8 weeks.
S.C. law requires uniformed officers whose primary function is to answer calls for service and interact with the public, or officers who have a reasonable expectation that they will, to wear a body camera. All law enforcement agencies had to submit their body-worn camera policies to the S.C. Criminal Justice Academy for approval. After approval, agencies may apply for funding/reimbursement from the S.C. Dept. of Public Safety; however, the state has not announced the percentage of that reimbursement.
During the meeting, Chief Wade Marvin told council his department tested a number of different brands and types of body cameras during the past six months and have chosen Watchguard VISTA cameras as the ones that they feel best suit their needs.
The department’s policies have been approved and the application for reimbursement will be filed by April 29, he said.
In other business:
Vicki Brown and Omar Jeter gave a presentation on the Comicon planned at the library in July. The event will feature comic book collectors, gaming enthusiasts, etc. in an all-day event at the Colleton County Memorial Library. Similar events in Charleston and Columbia have drawn thousands of people, Brown said, and they are expecting a huge crowd.
Council approved a resolution to upgrade the water lines in Ruffin, increasing the diameter of the pipes to provide better water pressure for residents.
After completion, the city will provide 10-percent in matching funds of the total grant request as required by the Community Development Block Grant Program. The city will own and operate the Ruffin water system.
Approved a resolution to endorse the Lowcountry Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan, as required by FEMA. This plan is updated every five years, and provides FEMA monetary support to purchase pre-disaster preparedness items such as generators.
Approved a request to use the downtown plaza and close Washington Street for the annual Memorial Day Ceremony on May 30 by the Colleton County Veterans Council.
City Manager Jeff Molinari reported that the city is working on obtaining easements from four property owners to construct a trail behind the park on North Lemacks Street. One family has already donated the land to the city, and letters will be sent to the other three.
Council then went into executive session to receive legal advice on the I-95 Business Loop Project and settlement of a legal claim. No action was taken.