View Full Version : Big brother watching you Big Time in midtown!

April 1st, 2009, 02:44 PM
From today's N Y TIMES:

Police Seek a Second Zone of High Security in the City

By AL BAKER (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/b/al_baker/index.html?inline=nyt-per)
Published: March 31, 2009
Police Commissioner Raymond W. Kelly (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/k/raymond_w_kelly/index.html?inline=nyt-per) said Tuesday that he wanted to create a security network in Midtown Manhattan that would involve license plate readers, heavily armed officers and a web of private and public surveillance cameras.
The plan, which would resemble a counterterrorism network already being installed in Lower Manhattan between Canal Street and Battery Park, would keep a hyper-vigilant eye on the corridor from 34th to 59th Streets, from the Hudson River to the East River, the commissioner told City Council members at a budget hearing Tuesday.
Like its sister system, the Midtown zone would have at its core the collection of data, including license plate numbers and video of people on the streets. It would rely on a web of public and private security cameras feeding to a joint coordination center at 55 Broadway that became functional last fall.
“Because this model of cooperation holds such promise, we are looking to extend it to other areas of the city,” Mr. Kelly told members of the City Council’s Public Safety Committee. “It will give us a comprehensive and real-time view of Midtown, offering us the best possible coverage while avoiding redundancies.”
The Police Department has requested $21 million in federal grant money to pay for the first phase, said Mr. Kelly, who added that the cost could reach $58 million. He conceded, under questioning from Peter F. Vallone Jr. (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/v/peter_f_vallone_jr/index.html?inline=nyt-per), the committee chairman, that the plan was dependent on federal funds.
The plan devised to protect downtown Manhattan, known as the Lower Manhattan Security Initiative, has been a combustible issue since it was introduced by Mr. Kelly in 2005. Proponents say it will make Lower Manhattan more of an impenetrable target, creating a London-like “ring of steel” around downtown, with mobile teams of heavily armed officers as well as technology like closed-circuit television cameras, license plate readers and explosive trace detection systems. That plan is expected to cost $92 million, most of which the department has secured.
But the New York Civil Liberties Union (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/organizations/n/new_york_civil_liberties_union/index.html?inline=nyt-org) filed a freedom of information act lawsuit against the department in September, seeking documents about the initiative and particularly about how the department planned to protect citizens’ privacy even as it moved to protect them.
The civil liberties group said on Tuesday that more light needed to be shined on the process. “The N.Y.P.D. (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/organizations/n/new_york_city_police_department/index.html?inline=nyt-classifier) must not spend vast amounts of public money blanketing downtown and Midtown Manhattan in surveillance cameras without any public discussion of its plans and without clear privacy protections,” said Donna Lieberman (http://topics.nytimes.com/top/reference/timestopics/people/l/donna_lieberman/index.html?inline=nyt-per), the group’s executive director.
Separately, the department is moving ahead with a proposal, Operation Sentinel, which would track every vehicle that entered Manhattan by photographing and scanning license plates at every bridge and tunnel. The plan also calls for sensors to detect the presence of radioactivity.
At Tuesday’s hearing, Mr. Kelly spoke of the economy’s effect on the force, which would get $4.37 billion in the next fiscal year under a proposed budget from the mayor’s office, down from $4.52 billion this year.
He said $1 million had been cut for a program to test police officer candidates for steroid use. Instead, officers will be tested after they are hired but before the end of their probationary period.

Also, Mr. Kelly said the department’s vehicle budget would be slashed by $6.1 million by cutting plans to buy 245 cars — a fraction of the 7,000-vehicle fleet. Mr. Kelly said no marked patrol cars would be lost, but there would be a cut in unmarked cars and rental or leased vehicles.

April 1st, 2009, 02:47 PM
A cut in unmarked cars? Gee, I am heartbroken.

April 1st, 2009, 03:57 PM
We really do not need cameras.

The one thing that terrorist attacks have proven is that they are not coordinated military attacks. This is not a bank robbery, no hostages were taken, nobody was left to be "taken down".

So what will a bunch of armored up cops in downtown be good for but another body in the rubble?

To make us "feel" safer? They scare the crap out of me.

April 1st, 2009, 04:36 PM
They could franchise this into a 'what not to wear' type tv series, something like Candid Camera.

April 1st, 2009, 08:16 PM
Sex in Public Places will become more adventurous.

April 2nd, 2009, 09:41 AM
I prefer sex in Pubic Places TYVM.

April 2nd, 2009, 08:52 PM
I am in deepest mourning over the demise of public sex. :(