Administrative Policies - Policy 0022

State of Vermont
Agency of Administration
Department of Buildings & General Services

Policy 0022

Title: Guidelines for the Use of Video-Monitoring Equipment In, Upon or Around State Facilities.
Date of Issue: August 1, 2002
Supersedes: Initial Policy

AUTHORITY

Title 29 Vermont Statutes Annotated Chapter 5A.

PURPOSE

It is sometimes, necessary, appropriate, and vital to have video-monitoring equipment installed at State Facilities as a means of providing additional security. Video monitoring can be an effective technique when used as part of a total security plan to protect public safety and detect or deter criminal activity.

The Department of Buildings and General Services firmly believes that when used correctly and appropriately, this equipment provides enhanced security for State personnel, those receiving services or conducting business with the State, and the citizens of the State.

DEFINITIONS

Commissioner: The Commissioner of the Department of Buildings and General Services

Department: The Department of Buildings and General Services

Secure Room: A room that has strict access control and is secured by at least two different locking mechanisms.

State Facility: Any building, structure, improvements or land owned or leased by the State of Vermont.

Video Monitoring Equipment: This is generally broken into the following components:

  • Surveillance System: A mechanical or electronic system or device that enables continuous or periodic monitoring of persons, places or events. This equipment is meant to transmit and/or capture images.
  • Reception Equipment: The equipment or device used to receive and record the images and other information captured by a surveillance system.
  • Storage Device: The equipment such as a videotape; computer disk, drive or chip; CD ROM, or DVD used to store the recorded images captured by the surveillance system and reception equipment.

POLICY

The Commissioner of Buildings and General Services shall approve all video monitoring at any State Facility prior to its installation and operation in accordance with the following guidelines:

  1. Except with specific written permission, only the Department shall own and/or operate video-monitoring systems within, upon or around a State Facility. State agencies requesting video monitoring shall work in consultation with the Department of Buildings and General Services on the design, installation and operation planning for all video monitoring. The name, title, and work location of agency personnel necessary to operate the equipment or observe the images shall be submitted to the Commissioner for approval. Each agency shall designate a specific contact person for each surveillance system for the Commissioner's approval. The Commissioner may authorize an agency contact person to grant permission regarding release of stored images as per paragraph 5 of these guidelines. The Department of Corrections and the Department of Public Safety are exempted from the approval requirements of this paragraph but shall comply, to the extent appropriate with respect to legal duties concerning security and public safety, with the guidelines below.
  2. Each State agency using video-monitoring equipment shall, at minimum, post conspicuous signage at the perimeter of each facility where the monitoring equipment is in use. Signage must be readily observable by the average person, use lettering no smaller than one-half inch in height, clearly identify the agency contact person, and comply with applicable regulatory requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Vermont Accessibility laws.
  3. All reception equipment shall be maintained in a Secure Room that is locked at all times and only authorized personnel shall have access.
  4. Video monitoring shall generally be limited to common and open spaces trafficked by government employees and those conducting government business. Video monitoring of other areas necessary to ensure State security shall be identified during the design planning stage for approval of the Commissioner. Bathroom interiors shall not be subject to video monitoring.
  5. Image storage and review: Images taken in, upon or around rest areas and welcome centers may not be stored for more than 168 hours. Images taken in, upon or around all other State Facilities may not be stored for more than 96 hours.

Stored images are not to be reviewed by, released, reproduced, shown, given or otherwise disclosed to anyone other than authorized agency personnel without the explicit written permission of the Commissioner or an agency contact person authorized to grant such permission by the Commissioner. It is the intent of the State to cooperate with criminal investigations and to honor a valid court order to produce stored images.

AUDITING

The Department shall maintain a current list of those State Facilities where video-monitoring systems are in use. State agencies given permission to operate video monitoring equipment, either individually or jointly, shall notify the Commissioner annually, by September 15th of all equipment in use, its location and the contact person for each monitoring system.

Department Approval:  Thomas W. Torti, Commissioner

Agency Approval Required:  Kathleen C. Hoyt, Secretary

Contact Information

Commissioner's Office

2 Governor Aiken Avenue
Montpelier, Vermont 05633-5801
(802) 828-3314 

24/7 Statewide Security Phone Number
(802) 828-0777

24/7 Statewide Security Pager
(802) 240-0068