Penticton City Council has agreed to immediately move ahead with a crime deterrent pilot project brought forward by the Downtown Penticton Association (DPA) and presented to Council on October 5, 2021 by Councillor Watt as a 2022 budget ‘Notice of Motion’.
Supporting the strategic priority of Community Safety, Council has directed staff to provide the DPA with a $40,000 grant to fund the project costs associated with installing downtown surveillance cameras on commercial properties. Located in three to five high-crime locations, and featuring signage, two-way voice notifications and strobe lights, each camera will be monitored from 9pm to 9am with the operator, if needed, advising those trespassing or acting irresponsibly to move on or, if needed, dispatching a response from either Bylaw or the RCMP.
“By way of this pilot project, businesses and residents in the downtown will gain a better sense of security knowing that our Bylaw and RCMP are responding to issues that are happening, versus issues that have happened,” said Penticton Mayor, John Vassilaki. “Overall, the situation downtown is challenging, and while there’s no single solution for addressing the deliberate disorder we witness, I’m pleased to see proactive organizations like the DPA helping the situation by coming forward to Council with ideas that we can introduce now to deter poor behavior and respond to crime.”
“In keeping with City Council’s focus on security, we created this program to fit within the scope of the Community Safety Strategic Priority. With crime and disorder affecting our business community and residents, one solution we brought forward to pilot is the Remote Guard Service,” said Executive Director of the Downtown Penticton Association, Lynn Allin. “Our intent is to reduce unwanted activity in our downtown with a security program to deter unacceptable behaviour that is negatively impacting our members and their customers.”
Through this partnership with the DPA, the DPA will work with a local electrical and security company to implement the pilot program and, on a monthly basis, provide the City with information on the results of the monitoring and the program’s overall performance.