The project to install surveillance cameras at Brookfield Township Community Park to monitor social distancing is a go, but there will not be lights attached to them.
At least, not for now.
Trustees Ron Haun and Gary Lees on Sept. 14 hired Becdel Control to install cameras, poles and wiring and perform the associated excavation that goes with it for $49,700. Trustee Dan Suttles voted against the project saying the township does not need to watch its residents, and that the 13 to 15 cameras that would be put up is too much.
The money will come from the township’s CARES Act appropriation for COVID-related expenses, and the cameras will be monitored by the police department.
Haun also wanted to install lights on the cameras by separate $4,800 contract to Becdel using township park improvement funds. Suttles objected, saying the cameras and lights are all one project and that trying to separate them is just an attempt to work around the state bidding law, which requires sealed bids for purchases greater than $50,000.
Haun and Suttles said they each consulted attorneys and received conflicting opinions. Suttles asked that the Trumbull County Prosecutor’s Office be consulted before the light project is awarded, and Lees agreed. Township attorney Jeff Goodman suggested putting off the light portion project until a later date, so there is no question as to whether it is one or two projects, Haun said Oct. 23.
Trumbull County Combined Health District Commissioner Frank Migliozzi wrote a letter to trustees dated Oct. 19 that said the cameras could help in contact tracing if there is a COVID-19 outbreak in Brookfield.