Friday, February 22, 2013

Roosevelt Island Public Safety Body and Facility Cameras On Agenda For RIOC February 25 Operations Committee Meeting - Nothing On Brutality Allegations In Public Session But Executive Session Agenda Item On Pending Litigation

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Operations Committee will be meeting next Monday. The Public Session is devoted to issues relating to the Public Safety Department but does not appear to include any specific reference to the issues brought forth at the February 16 Public Safety Accountability and Brutality Demonstration. An Executive Session (closed to the public) is scheduled for an update on pending litigation which presumably involves the alleged Anthony Jones/Public Safety brutality incident.

According to RIOC:

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Operations Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Monday, February 25, 2013 at 5:30 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York.


1. Discussions of Public Safety Body-mount Cameras
2. Discussion of Facility Cameras in Public Areas of the Public Safety Office
3. Discussion of the Use of Outside Consultant for Public Safety Department Review
4. Chair's Motion for Executive Session for an Update on Pending Litigation
5. Any Other Committee Business That May be Brought Before the Committee


The Open Meetings Law of the State of New York requires that all public bodies conduct meetings, convened for the purpose of officially conducting public business, in a manner open to attendance by the general public to observe and listen.
An audio web cast of the Operations Committee Public Session will be made available soon thereafter.

Public Safety security cameras were discussed during the February 13 RIOC Operations Committee meeting (full audio web cast of meeting here). Acting RIOC President Don Lewis said that the security camera project had previously been delayed because of:  
... prior issues ... different thoughts on to how to proceed with people internally...
and that now:
... getting cameras in the Public Safety Lobby was a priority so we have taken that as a priority over many other issues...
No discussion as to what were the "prior issues" and "different thoughts" that delayed the project referred to by Mr. Lewis.

RIOC intends to place security cameras in the Public Safety Office Lobby and across the street facing Public Safety Office.

Image of Public Safety Office From JEFF BACHNER/FOR NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

RIOC Director David Kraut asked if there were any internal cameras in the Public Safety Office and was told there were already 2 cameras in the cells. RIOC Director Margie Smith asked if they were "live" and was told the cameras have to be turned on. Ms. Smith asked why there were not always on and was told it was because of the amount of storage space required for the images from the camera feed.

Discussion then ensued regarding integrating the Public Safety Cell Cameras with the new system for the Lobby and facing the Office but in the meantime RIOC Director Michael Shinozaki made it clear that if someone is in the cell;
... I don't ever want to hear we didn't turn the cameras on...
Here's Part 1 of the discussion

and Part 2.

I asked whether the camera feeds in the Public Safety Office lobby, across the street facing the Public Safety Office and at the Roosevelt Island Tram could be made available live to the public. Mr. Shinozaki  and Mr. Kraut expressed interest in the idea but said further investigation would have to be made regarding privacy and technology issues raised by implementing such an idea.

UPDATE 2/25: According to RIOC:
Please be advised that the Operations Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors Meeting scheduled for Monday, February 25, 2013 at 5:30 p.m., will be held at the Manhattan Park Community Center at 8 River Road, Roosevelt Island, New York.


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group
Perhaps RIOC anticipates a larger crowd for this Operations Committee meeting than can be accommodated in the 591 Main Street conference room.


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