An ordinance was just passed in Toledo, Ohio that requires convenience stores and small restaurant owners to install a CCTV system in their business.
The ordinance requires all CCTV systems to meet the following criteria:
• Produce a "recognizable, color, retrievable, enlargeable, and reproducible photographic images of persons" and that they be of sufficient clarity for identification purposes; remain fixed and not pan in the designated area.
• Camera must cover the cash register or area where the money is being exchanged.
• CCTV System must be maintained to make sure it is in proper working order and have a light or other signals that shows the system has been activated.
• Business must post sign stating that the business is under video surveillance.
• Recorded tapes must be kept for 30 days and business owners are required to ensure the accuracy of the time keeping in conjunction with what has been recorded.
• The recorded images must be able to be retrieved by the police department's crime lab.
Those found in violation of the following will be subject to fines of $100 each day until the ordinances criteria is met.
The law has been recently been challenged by local business owners who are claiming the law is unconstitutional. With the law being challenged the city has delayed the enforcing of the new law until July 1. Business owners say that they are having a hard time trying to meet the criteria, due to the cost of buying and installing the CCTV systems and the cost of buying the license. Some business say that they might have to close down if the law is to be enforced.
Andy Went from CameraSecurityNow says he has seen a definite increase in calls from small business owners looking for a quote for a security camera system.
Toledo is not the only city to adopt a law designed to help prevent crime around convenience stores. Houston, Texas and Hartford, Connecticut have both adopted laws similar to Toledo’s security camera law.