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Tampa City Council Contemplates Use of RNC Security Cameras

Published by Ellen on September 10, 2012 10:39 AM

Sixty security cameras with wireless capability were deployed at the Republication National Convention in Tampa, Florida in late August. Now, the city is considering whether or not to continue using the surveillance cameras, which are currently fastened to traffic light posts, light poles, and buildings. The camera systems were funded by a $50 million grant supplied by Congress.

On September 20, the Tampa City Council will host a workshop to decide if the cameras should remain where they are or be moved to high-crime neighborhoods to act as deterrents. The city approved the cameras for the RNC on the condition that a workshop would be held afterwards to decide their fate.

Tampa Councilmen Mike Suarez had concerns about how much money it would cost the city to keep them up and running. However, they proved to be highly effective during the RNC, providing crowd control and allowing officers to view real-time video on their laptops and Smartphones.

A Tampa resident, who works as a web developer and programmer, mapped out the location of the RNC cameras for the public to see. The cameras have a rather conspicuous appearance to alert people of their presence. The city of St. Paul, Minneapolis made the decision to keep the security cameras that were used at the RNC in 2008.