Flock Cameras in our Village - Automated License Plate Readers

This City Project has an Ad Hoc Committee with Dramov & Richards Council Members established in Fall of 2023. 


July 7th, 2024 - Monterey Herald Page B1 - 

HERE is the article link (subscription required) Title is  "Police warned about lisence plate data law" .

June 10th, 2024, Special Topic Public Community Meeting

HERE is the City Notice for this Meeting. HERE is the YouTube video from this session. This was held in Council Chambers and is hosted by Councilmembers Dramov and Richards.  Alissandra Dramav and Paul Tomasi presented slides to set the stage with background for community questions and feedback. Chief Paul reinfoced this system does not capture/track people, just vehicle license plates for 30 days only. Seargent  Bruno demonstrated the Carmel PD "Trasparency Portal" which is also accessible to the public showing overall statistics and "searches" for specific vehicles tied to a crime or case (they cannot do a live view into a camera location).  Monterey County municipalities and quantity of  Flock Cameras currrently include: Pacific Grove 12, Salinas 72, Marina 20, Seaside 25, Sand City 10, Monterey 34, Soledad 6, Monterey County 60. Clarity was provided that 6 of the initial Flock cameras installed are in use, some installed are not active and some were not installed. Our Village does track multiple case results of solving crimes with these cameras.
While it was helpful to better understand the needs, use, function and productivity of the partially deployed Flock technology (see video), there were community concerns expressed on civil liberties, personal privacy, camera location, quantity, visual clutter and needs for clarity on data policy.  What protections do we have here (and/or contractually) on the data in this system being misused intentionally or unintentionally? It was also mentioned about concerns about potential bad reactions to the National Election in November - and how cameras may aid in providing added saftey tools to our Police team and our community.
It appeared the next step is to make a recommendation(s) formally at an upcoming City Council meeting and added community feedback for direction. Some of potential recommendations Chief Paul would/could include are perimiter camera placement, no cameras in residential areas, place them only on existing poles (not stand alone poles) and annual public reporting of use and results "creating a virtual gated community" for our Village.

July 11, 2023, Regular City Council Meeting - Open Comments Topic
  • Open comments in YouTube Video HERE, but was not an agend-ized item. 
  • Carmel Pine Cone Issue July 14, 2023 cover page article  https://carmelpinecone.com/230714PC.pdf  "Residents object to surveillance cameras in neighborhoods"
    • ...“We’re looking for more transparency on the rollout of those cameras — where they’re going to be placed and how they’ll really work,” a Carmel Residents Association board member Nancy Twomey said during the public comment period Tuesday. She also sent an email to Watkins and Council concerning privacy and aesthetics, and questioning the logic behind placing them on neighborhood streets that aren’t access points. She asked that the rollout be halted while these issues are resolved. “We want the cameras — it’s just a matter of how they’re going to be deployed and what they do,” she told the council July 11."... (The full email mentioned can be read HERE)
  • After this City Council meeting, in conjunction with rollout of cameras about town, the City has halted the rollout - pending a future topic at an upcoming public meeting.   This update was covered in the Friday Letter July 23rd HERE
Press Articles Covering Flock Camera Rollouts - regarding concerns on surveilance and privacy. 

April 4, 2023 - Regular City Council Meeting - Puchase of Flock Security Cameras - Consent Agenda Item

Staff Report with multiple attachments HERE - this was the original request for funding of these new cameras that was approved by City Council at this meeting, without presentation (that was not requested by staff or public).

Attachment 1) Resolution 2023-031
Attachment 2) Flock Safety FAQ's
Attachment 2) Flock Safety Sole Source Letter
Attachment 3) Flock Overview for Cities
Attachment 4) Flock Safety ALPR Privacy and Ethics
Attachment 5) Flock Group Inc. Agreement