County to Reimburse Residents, Businesses for Security Cameras

Several neighborhoods in Silver Spring can take part in a new public safety initiative from the county that will reimburse residents and businesses in specific areas that set up security cameras to assist in crime prevention.

The Police-Private Security Camera Program, announced last week, will provide reimbursement to eligible residents for up to $250 for a security camera installation, and eligible businesses and nonprofits for up to $1,250. The program was launched on November 15 with $255,000 in funding for the current fiscal year.

According to a county press release, the new program is a result of Council Bill 14-22, which became law last year with sponsorship from Councilmembers Sidney Katz and Gabe Albornoz, as well as former Councilmember Craig Rice. Montgomery County Police subsequently created program guidelines outlined in Executive Regulation 04-23.

County officials anticipate that the program’s funding could result in over 1,000 new cameras being installed in key areas with increased crime around the county.

“These security camera rebates will help our residents and businesses protect their homes, establishments, and communities,” said County Executive Elrich. “Security cameras can deter as well as solve crimes. This program will improve public safety in MCPD’s priority areas. I appreciate the Montgomery County Council for passing this legislation and encourage all eligible residents and businesses to apply for these rebates.”

 “This program is a valuable tool in both deterring criminal activity and helping police in solving crimes in areas that have the greatest need,” said Councilmember Sidney Katz. “I believe our residents and businesses will see it as a proactive approach that will heighten community efforts in addressing safety and security in our neighborhoods.”

The Police-Private Security Camera Program Camera Incentive Program, led by MCPD, aims to reduce crime in high-crime areas of the County. These areas were chosen based on public safety data, including crime rates.

Areas identified in the program can be found on an interactive map tool on the MCPD website.

“This program not only empowers residents and business owners but also establishes a collaborative partnership between our community and law enforcement,” said Montgomery County Police Chief Marcus Jones. “By installing surveillance cameras, participants can actively assist law enforcement in ensuring public safety. Together, we are fostering a more secure community.”  

Security cameras purchased through this program must meet the minimum technical and video quality standards specified on the MCPD website. Once approved for the program, participants are required to keep video footage for seven days. The cameras must be installed on the exterior of a building and be waterproof to ensure optimal use. Furthermore, applicants must provide written agreement that the security camera will not be used to record private property not owned by the applicant. If the applicant is a business or nonprofit organization, they must also agree in writing to prominently display a notice informing visitors of the presence of the security camera.

Individuals, businesses, or nonprofit organizations must register online to take part. Vulnerable areas, identified during registration, will determine eligibility for the program. Residents must buy and install their security cameras before applying for reimbursement.

More information about the program, including an interactive map of eligible areas, can be found on the MCPD website.

Photo: “Security camera” by Ervins Strauhmanis is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

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