LYNN — Security cameras will be installed throughout City Hall at the end of the month, which will be monitored by police and aimed at making the building safer for employees and the public.
The 39 security cameras will cover the four floors in City Hall, the Lynn Memorial Auditorium space, as well as the parking lots surrounding the building, according to James Cowdell, Economic Development & Industrial Corporation of Lynn (EDIC/Lynn) executive director.
Cowdell said the $100,000 investment in the cameras and their installation is being paid for by EDIC/Lynn, the city’s development bank. The city has hired Comfort Systems, the same company that installed security cameras at the schools.
The security cameras are an initiative of Mayor Thomas M. McGee, who asked for EDIC’s assistance. There are currently no security cameras at City Hall.
“There are several points of entrances and exits in City Hall and there’s really no security, so this is long overdue,” Cowdell said. “I think the mayor’s feelings and mine are let’s do something proactive instead of waiting for something to happen and have them be reactive.”
McGee said as a former senator, he saw how important security was at the State House. He’s seen the evolution of how security measures have changed in many places following the terrorist attacks on 9/11, particularly at the State House, and realized there was limited security at City Hall.
“I thought it was something that was important to address,” McGee said. “I think security cameras are a step in the right direction.”
McGee said it was important to balance continuing to provide the public the access to the building they need while also making sure security measures are in place to ensure the safety of the people who work in the building and who visit.
In addition, McGee said city officials have been working with Lynn Police Officer Oren Wright, the school security and emergency planning liaison, to implement IDs and security badges for staff at City Hall, with the lanyards similar to the ones staff at Lynn Public Schools wear throughout the day. In terms of access, the mayor said there might be a couple of doors that may be accessible by passes only.
Similar to the security cameras at the schools, McGee said police will monitor the cameras and respond if they see anything out of the ordinary.
“I think the important point is making the facility secure and making sure the public access continues to be what the public expects,” McGee said.