The ordinance that was ultimately passed wasn’t as ambitious as the original, but advocates say it’s a good start.
Council official says there wasn’t enough time last week to finalize the ordinance as the city was dealing with several pressing issues including Hurricane Delta.
Extensive reporting and approval processes are being stripped from the ordinance after pushback by council members and Cantrell administration officials
Council members were supportive of broad aspects of the ordinance, but some remain unconvinced on certain restrictions.
“As a citizen concerned with the health and liberty of our fellow New Orleanians during this unprecedented time, I was outraged to learn of the City of New Orleans continued expansion of surveillance tactics and tools through unconstitutional police checkpoints and new contracts with surveillance companies. These irresponsible choices divert funds and attention from assisting those most affected by the intersection of COVID-19 and existing structural inequalities.”
A public defender sued last year after the city denied her request for surveillance camera location data.
Councilman Jason Williams said he was prompted to the delay the vote and create new regulations after meeting with the local community group Eye on Surveillance
A public defender sued for crime camera location records after the city claimed they were too sensitive for public release.
Aware that camera footage could be abused, the city developed a policy that shields most video from release. But that policy appears to go against state sunshine laws.
Active Solutions COO Jeff Burkhardt denied that he purchased or owned the cameras, calling a reporter’s questions “fake news.” Less than 24 hours after The Lens called him, the cameras were gone.