Delays for Bandon’s CCTV over who controls recordings

March 25th, 2021 5:10 PM

By Kieran O'Mahony

‘We want to mind our town’. Pic: Shutterstock

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PLANS to roll out CCTV in Bandon are being stalled over the issue of who will control the recorded data.

Cllr Gillian Coughlan (FF) called for an update from the Minister for Justice on the installation of CCTV at last month’s Bandon Kinsale Municipal District meeting, while also enquiring about the possibility of erecting cameras at known litter black spots.

‘Money has been ringfenced for this for over 10 years and we haven’t seen it realised. I think it’s important for Bandon especially with the population increase,’ said Cllr Coughlan.

Cllr Sean O’Donovan (FF) said the issue of CCTV goes back to the days of the Town Council. He queried where the money allocated for this has gone and pointed out that Bandon is one of the only towns in West Cork without CCTV.

‘The issue here is with GDPR and legislation has changed since whereby the Minister is not allowing the recorded information to be activated by gardaí,’ said Cllr O’Donovan.

‘In most of the other towns the data is being recorded in the garda station and controlled by the gardaí so why are we different to other towns? ‘ he asked.

Cllr John O’Sullivan (FG) said that unless the data can be accessed and accepted in court they would have to tread carefully.

Senior executive officer Mac Dara O’ h-Icí said that the money set aside from the Town Council is still available for this project.

‘We had gone to the market, appointed a consultant and had a design and were ready to go, but there were ongoing issues of who would be the controller of the data. The legislation said the gardaí could not be the data controller,’ said Mr O h-Icí.

Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG) queried the point of putting up CCTV cameras if they can’t be used later in court.

Cllr Coughlan said she was a bit ‘dispirited’ and that it sounds like they won’t be getting CCTV in Bandon in the near future because of this logjam.

‘We want to mind our town and I would appeal to Council officials to try their best to proceed with these challenges as it’s the best time to be putting infrastructure into the town. CCTV is also a serious deterrent to anti-social behaviour and other types of crime.’

Mr O h-Icí added that he has been in contact with the environmental department about installing CCTV at known litter blackspots in the area.

However, in January Waterford City and County Council was reprimanded by the Data Protection Commissioner, for its use of CCTV to monitor littering blackspots.

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