September 3, 2008 By Jim McKay, Justice and Public Safety Editor
Reading, Pa., is one of the latest cities to deploy a citywide wireless surveillance network, joining Long Beach, Calif., and Milwaukee in combating crime with the aid of video surveillance cameras.
The deployment, which will begin with 22 cameras in downtown Reading, will take advantage of the 4.9 GHz public safety band and provide video access to mobile police vehicles.
"We are implementing this video surveillance system as part of a larger effort to reduce crime in our city, and we are extremely excited with the broad support in our community," said William Heim, Reading Police Department chief in a news release.
Reading entered into a five-year agreement with Wi4Net, a division of CelPlan Technologies, to deploy and maintain the system. Wi4Net deployed the systems in Long Beach and Milwaukee as well.
The Long Beach solution features 29 cameras and is expanding; the Milwaukee deployment covers 96 square miles. Wireless surveillance systems are growing in popularity as jurisdictions realize their value as crime deterrents and as awareness of the availability of the 4.9 GHz band grows.
This Digital Communities white paper highlights discussions with IT officials in four counties that have adopted shared services models. Our aim was to learn about the obstacles these governments have faced when it comes to shared services and what it takes to overcome those roadblocks. We also spoke with several members of the IT industry who have thought long and hard about these issues. The paper offers some best practices for shared government-to-government services, but also points out challenges that government and industry still must overcome before this model gains widespread adoption.