Village considers cameras to curb vandalism

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Portions of a large section of fencing along Kingston’s multipurpose trail were damaged by vandals recently. Nancy Kelly

By Nancy Kelly

Big Brother may soon be watching in Kingston after recent vandalism to fencing along the village’s multi-purpose trail.

Village commissioners debated the value of installing cameras at spots along the trail and at other village-owned facilities at their Nov. 8 meeting.

“We need to do something more proactive than calling the police two days later,” said commission chairman Martha Armstrong of the village’s current response to similar incidents.

Commissioners were in agreement that surveillance cameras would be a good start in discouraging property damage in public places along the trail and at the public works barn and sewage treatment plant, which have also been repeated targets of vandals in the past few years.

“It is unpardonable what was done to the fence,” said commissioner Doug Beaman. “Fixing it and doing nothing to prevent it again just lets (vandals) get away with it”.

The cost for materials needed to repair the fence damage was estimated at $367. Staff was instructed to provide a cost estimate for a multi-camera surveillance system.

“We need to build the cost into the budget and put this equipment into the equation,” to discourage future vandalism in public areas in the village, commented commissioner John Pierce.

Several years ago, after repeated incidents of property damage to the Greenwood Civic Centre, members of the Greenwood village commission approved the installation of a video camera system around the building. Since then, vandalism to the civic centre property has just about been eliminated.

“Word gets out and just having people know the cameras are there can be a deterrent to this type of activity,” added commission chairman Don MacDonald.

“The camera system has been money well spent.”

Geographic location: Kingston

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