Solution providers with digital surveillance system expertise need to look no further than the city of Allentown, PA, for business. Government officials, including Mayor Ed Pawlowski and the police department are offering security camera system funding incentives to help investigators solve crime and deter criminals.
The city is offering matching grants totaling $30,000 to businesses that upgrade or replace digital surveillance systems (DSS) that are compatible with the city’s current video surveillance network, according to a recent city announcement reported in The Morning Call. Under the Security Camera Assistance Network (SCAN) program, the city will award applicants up to 50 percent of the total cost of the surveillance equipment and installation, with a maximum cap of $3,000 for an individual business. The funding will cover 15 to 20 surveillance cameras.
To apply for funding, the city requires a business to get two estimates from licensed solution providers detailing the specs of the SCAN system. The recommended setup includes two exterior cameras, two interior cameras and a digital video recorder.
Chips on Duty
The city of Allentown currently has a network of 175 surveillance cameras and plans to grow its digital police force. Since 2007, the cameras have provided more than 350 “camera catches” where dispatchers saw illegal activity on video, according to police. “Our crime-fighting efforts have been greatly enhanced by our street camera program,” Pawlowski said in a statement.
The SCAN program is aimed at helping SMBs that can’t afford digital surveillance improve their security by adding new cameras or upgrading their older equipment, if they already have a system in place. Allentown Police Chief Keith Morris notes that even though many city businesses have surveillance cameras, they may have outdated technology, which makes getting information to investigators not only challenging, but it arrives too late when it is transported via thumb drive or CD.
The city considered installing a network of surveillance cameras linked to the city’s current camera system, but that option proved to be too costly. So instead it opted to provide matching funding to enhance the number of connected cameras citywide.
According to the SCAN application, the specs needed for the digital camera include a minimum resolution of 1280x720 and nighttime recording capabilities through adequate light or infrared illumination. The network video recorder or digital video recorder (DVR) must be able to export video in both native and open file format and allow system operators to view and retrieve data while the system remains in operation. The DVR must also have sufficient memory to retain data from all connected cameras for a period of 15 days.
More information on the SCAN program, including the funding application, can be found at the Allentown Department of Community and Economic Development.
Intel NUC Digital Security and Surveillance Bundle
For solution providers installing DSS systems, Intel recently announced a bundled solution that includes the Intel NUC, Vivotek cameras, with advanced computer vision software from Sighthound. Learn more about this smart DSS solution and download the data sheet.