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Surveillance camera ordinance revised

Chicago Sun Times | March 9, 2007
FRAN SPIELMAN

Chicago businesses open between the hours of 8 p.m. and 4 a.m. would be required to install indoor and outdoor surveillance cameras to fight crime, under a watered-down ordinance tailor-made to soften opposition.
Instead of requiring cameras at every licensed business open more than 12 hours a day, Ald. Ray Suarez (31st) has narrowed his focus to businesses open during the eight-hour window when most crimes are committed.

Mayor Daley embraced the alderman's more radical approach 14 months ago. But the mayor's support was not enough to get the ordinance out of a City Council committee. The License Committee is scheduled to consider the softer version on Monday.

"It didn't go anywhere because we had to make sure I cleared the hurdles with folks who had concerns. I've cleared those hurdles," Suarez said.

But Illinois Restaurant Association spokesman Kenny Sawyer said the 8 p.m. to 4 a.m. window does nothing to make the camera crackdown more palatable to restaurant owners forced to endure back-to-back City Council bans on smoking and foie gras.

"Our restaurants are serving dinner at 8 p.m. They would still have to provide cameras. This is just another proposal that's cost us money," he said.

 
 

 

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