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#NewtownPA Township Police Department Requests BOS Approval to Purchase License Plate Readers for $151,000

#NewtownPA Township Police Department Requests BOS Approval to Purchase License Plate Readers for $151,000 | Newtown News of Interest |

At its 13 March 2024 public meeting, the Newtown Board of Supervisors (BOS) will vote on a proposal  by the Police Department to purchase License Plate Readers for $151,000.


According the proposal before the BOS, this PLATELOGIQ solution will provide "advanced capabilities to the Newtown Township Police Department that will both aid in solving crimes and increase the level and degree of traffic enforcement and compliance in the Township."


The cost is estimated to be $151,000 and installation will be completed in April, 2024.


Middletown is set to install a similar or identical system that PLATELOGIQ would install and maintain at a cost of $15,900 annually. The first year of the contract will be funded through a grant from the Redevelopment Authority of Bucks County. Fore more on that, read "Middletown To Add New Fixed License Plate Readers At Intersections."


The proposed locations of the LPR in Newtown/Wrightstown are:




johnmacknewtown's insight:


The Newtown Manager informed the BOS that “In 2022 the Township was awarded a reimbursement grant to offset the cost of the equipment."


I have several questions/concerns regarding the implementation of LPR technology in Newtown, including:


  1. Is there a yearly maintenance fee (i.e., access to database/reporting system/etc.)?
  2. Shouldn't the BOS and the public have more time to review the pros and cons? I am concerned about the right to privacy by law-abiding citizens.
  3. Does the NTPD have or plan to have policies in place such as those recommended by the ACLU (see below) to protect citizen's right to privacy?


According to the ACLU, "the information captured by the readers – including the license plate number, and the date, time, and location of every scan – is being collected and sometimes pooled into regional sharing systems. As a result, enormous databases of innocent motorists’ location information are growing rapidly. This information is often retained for years or even indefinitely, with few or no restrictions to protect privacy rights.


The ACLU calls for the adoption of legislation and law enforcement agency policies adhering to the several principles, which you can find here...


According to Chief Hearn, license plate images will be retained for 30 days. "If it doesn't hit, it disappears in 30 days. If I get a hit on your license plate as unregistered, it will stay in there for 60 days. If there's a criminal investigation on the license plate we're going to keep it indefinitely until the case is closed." Read “License Plate Readers Coming To 4 #NewtownPA Township Area Intersections”;

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Newtown News of Interest
These Scoops are excerpts from articles published in local newspapers and other sources that may be of interest to Newtown area residents. Please click on the "From" link to access the full original article. Any opinions and "insights" appended to these article summaries are solely those of John Mack and do not represent the opinions of any other person or entity.
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