"You're being watched" just might be a very accurate statement to drivers and visitors to Superior.  The proposal to install a number of strategically-mounted security cameras throughout the city has advanced to a "trial run" stage.

That trial run could start as early as this summer.  However, some city leaders at the council level would like to see verbiage added at the ordinance level first.

At the Superior Public Safety Committee's meeting on April 21, the Superior Police Department gave the details about the system and made a proposal for a trial run.  If approved, that trial run would see "20 Flock Safety" cameras installed at various points in the city.  According to an article in the Superior Telegram [paywall], the police department "is seeking to place [the 20] cameras along traffic routes in Superior for a 45 day trial this summer".

Nick Cooper - TSM Duluth
Nick Cooper - TSM Duluth
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That proposal was tabled for the time being until the the city comes up with the necessary wording in the ordinance to allow for their use.  That move will be discussed at the next meeting for the Superior Public Safety Committee in May.

The Flock Safety cameras focus less on human beings and more on vehicles and traffic.  The cameras are able to track vehicles by identifying individual characteristics like license plates, color, type, model, even window stickers.  That information is collected as a "series of still pictures" which are available for law enforcement officials to review.

Business Improvement District (BID) in Superior, WI banner along Belknap Street
Nick Cooper - TSM Duluth
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It's worth noting that the camera system will not be used as "speed cameras" and they won't be used to capture plate numbers, cross-reference owners, and send out violation tickets.  There also isn't a "facial recognition" component.

There is a cost associated with the camera system:

"The base cost for the system is $2,500 per camera annually with a one-time installation fee of $350 per camera.  If one of the units is damaged or vandalized, the first replacement is free."

Currently, eleven other communities in Wisconsin use a similar camera system for security cameras.

Tower Avenue looking north in Downtown Superior, WI
Nick Cooper - TSM Duluth
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