Madison, WI Header
File #: 59300    Version: 1 Name: Surveillance technology
Type: Ordinance Status: Passed
File created: 1/28/2020 In control: COMMON COUNCIL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE
On agenda: 6/16/2020 Final action: 6/16/2020
Enactment date: 6/30/2020 Enactment #: ORD-20-00056
Title: Creating Section 23.63 of the Madison General Ordinances to establish Surveillance Technology guidelines for Departments
Sponsors: Rebecca Kemble, Samba Baldeh, Sheri Carter

Fiscal Note

The proposed resolution accepts recommendations from the President’s Work Group to Development Citywide Surveillance Equipment and Data Management Practices. The report includes five recommendations outlined on page two of the report. In general, these recommendations call for Common Council approval to purchase new surveillance equipment. The recommendations also call for an Annual Surveillance Technology Report from City agencies detailing how surveillance technology is being used, shared, and protected, along with any complaints received and how those complaints were mitigated.


Currently, installation and maintenance of the City’s camera system is managed by IT and Traffic Engineering. Three positions within IT spend a portion of their time (approximately 5-10% per position) managing the IT infrastructure for the current camera program. There are no positions in the City fully allocated to managing the camera network. The 2020 Operating Budget includes $25,000 in IT’s purchased service budget for maintenance costs associated with the existing system. The 2020 Capital Improvement Plan anticipates $150,000 in 2021 to replace the IT infrastructure for the existing camera system (program-Enterprise Business Solutions). Following the upgrade, it is anticipated the annual maintenance cost will increase.


Traffic Engineering spends approximately $55,000-$60,000 annually on the installation and maintenance of the actual cameras.


Based on the recommendations contained in the report, impacted City agencies may require additional staff for implementation. Any new positions may be considered as part of future budget deliberations.


Creating Section 23.63 of the Madison General Ordinances to establish Surveillance Technology guidelines for Departments


DRAFTER'S ANALYSIS:  This ordinance requires all Departments to provide notification to the Mayor and Common Council before obtaining or using new surveillance technology.  The ordinance requires all Departments to provide an annual report on its use of surveillance technology to the Common Council and public.  The ordinance creates several exceptions for the approval process outlined within the ordinance, including when there is an emergency or when the surveillance technology involves information that must remain confidential.  This ordinance establishes several definitions including surveillance data and surveillance technology. 




The Common Council of the City of Madison do hereby ordain as follows:


1.                     Section 23.63 entitled “Use of Surveillance Technology” of the Madison General Ordinances is created to read as follows:


23.63                     USE OF SURVEILLANCE TECHNOLOGY.

(1)                     Intent and Purpose.   City of Madison Departments have identified a wide variety of legitimate business reasons to use surveillance technology. The Common Council recognizes the need to carefully balance the need for surveillance for gathering data, public safety and the prosecution of crimes with the public’s right to privacy.  The Common Council desires to adopt a City-wide surveillance technology and surveillance data management policy that is consistent for all City Departments and covers all types of surveillance equipment usage and surveillance data management. 

(2)                     Definitions.

“City-wide Network” means the City’s IT infrastructure which is connected using high speed fiber optic connections which allows City employees to share communications, software, hardware devices, and data and information.

“Information Technology Director” means the head of the City Information Technology Department.

“Department” means any agency, department, or division of the City.

“Sensitive Surveillance Technology Information” means any information about Surveillance Technology of which public disclosure would unreasonably expose or endanger City infrastructure; would adversely impact operations of City agencies; or may not be legally disclosed.

“Surveillance” means observation of a place, person, group, or ongoing activity in order to gather information.

 “Surveillance Data” means any electronic data collected, captured, recorded, retained, processed, intercepted, analyzed, or shared by Surveillance Technology.

 “Surveillance Technology” means any hardware, software, electronic device, or system utilizing an electronic device, owned by the City or under contract with the City, designed, or primarily intended, to collect, retain, process, or share audio, electronic, visual, location, thermal, biometric, olfactory or other personally identifiable information of members of the public for the purpose of surveillance.  Surveillance Technology includes but is not limited to the following: cell site simulators; automatic license plate readers; gunshot detection systems; facial recognition software; gait analysis software; video cameras that record audio or video and can transmit or be remotely accessed; and unmanned aircraft systems equipped with remote video capabilities. Surveillance Technology does not include the following devices:

1.                     Office hardware, such as televisions, computers, credit card machines, copy machines, telephones and printers;

2.                     Audio/video teleconference systems;

3.                     City databases and enterprise systems that contain information, including, but not limited to, human resource, permit, license and business records;

4.                     City databases and enterprise systems that do not contain any data or other information collected, captured, recorded, retained, processed, intercepted, or analyzed by surveillance technology, including payroll, accounting, or other fiscal databases;

5.                     Information technology security systems, including firewalls and other cybersecurity systems;

6.                     Systems or databases that capture information where an individual knowingly and voluntarily consented to provide the information, such as applying for a permit, license or reporting an issue;

7.                     Physical access control systems, employee identification management systems, and other physical control systems;

8.                     Infrastructure and mechanical control systems, including those that control or manage street lights, traffic lights,  or water or sewer functions;

9.                     Manually-operated technological devices used primarily for internal City and Department communications and are not designed to surreptitiously collect surveillance data, such as radios, cell phones, personal communication devices and email systems;

10.                     Manually-operated, non-wearable, handheld cameras, audio recorders and video recorders that are not designed to be used surreptitiously and whose function is limited to manually capturing and manually downloading video and/or audio recordings;

11.                     Devices that cannot record or transmit audio or video or electronic data or be remotely accessed, such as vision-stabilizing binoculars or night vision goggles;

12.                     Computers, software, hardware or devices used in monitoring the work and work-related activities involving City buildings, employees, contractors and volunteers or used in conducting internal investigations involving City employees, contractors and volunteers;

13.                     Medical equipment and systems used to record, diagnose, treat, or prevent disease or injury and are used and/or kept in the course of providing City services;

14.                     Parking Ticket Devices;

15.                     Equipment used on a temporary basis during  active investigations and in accordance with City policies;

16.                     Cameras intended to record activities at City facilities in nonpublic areas;

17.                     Police Department interview rooms, holding cells, and Police Department internal security audio/video recording systems;

18.                     Police Department records/case management systems, digital fingerprinting systems, Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD); and

19.                     Fire Department equipment and technology used for Emergency Medical Services, Hazardous Material, Lake Rescue and Heavy Urban Rescue, such as tunneling cameras, sonar, and thermal imagining.

(3)                      Applicability.  This ordinance applies to all Departments that do any of the following:

(a)                     Currently uses or has access to any Surveillance Technology

(b)                     Seeks funds for new Surveillance Technology including applying for or accepting grants, state or federal funds or other donations;

(c)                     Acquires new Surveillance Technology, with or without a cost; 

(d)                     Enters into a contract or agreement with any other entity to share Surveillance Technology or Surveillance Data; and

(e)                     Changes the use of existing surveillance technology for a purpose substantially different than originally approved.

(4)                     Approval Process.  Within ninety (90) days of adoption of this ordinance, all Departments must comply with this section prior to any use of new Surveillance Technology or any substantial change of use of existing Surveillance Technology.

(a)                      All Department requests to purchase, acquire or contract for the use of new Surveillance Technology or substantially change the use of existing Surveillance Technology that will connect to the City-wide Network will be referred to the Common Council via the budget process or through a resolution. The resolution or budget request will include at least the following information:

1.                     The circumstances which necessitate the use of the Surveillance Technology;

2.                     The training protocols on Surveillance Technology use, including access to data and images, the Department will utilize;

3.                     The staff  position responsible for the account management and administration of the Surveillance Technology;

4.                     The staff  position responsible for receiving complaints regarding the Department’s use of Surveillance Technology;

5.                     The process for determining staff roles and access to Surveillance Technology;

6.                     The process to ensure access to Surveillance Technology is revoked when the employee no longer has a job related need to said access;

7.                     The personnel responsible for training staff and reviewing staff access and use of the Surveillance Technology;

8.                     The process for providing the Madison Police Department with immediate access to all data recordings that may constitute evidence of a crime, unless otherwise prohibited by law;

9.                     The time period that recorded audio and video will be retained, in accordance with the Department’s record retention policy;

10.                     The prohibition of using Surveillance Technology to visually or audibly monitor the interior of private dwellings where a reasonable expectation of privacy exists, absent a court order or other lawful justification; and

11.                     Procedures for ensuring that records are not destroyed during the pendency of any public records request, investigation or civil or criminal litigation.

(b)                     The Department’s request for Surveillance Technology will be approved only upon the determination that the benefits to the community members and residents of the City outweigh the potential privacy interests and that, in the judgment of the Common Council, there is not an effective alternative with a lesser impact upon privacy interests nor is there an alternative with equivalent impact on privacy interests but with a lesser economic cost.

(c)                     As part of the annual budget request, all Departments will notify the Information Technology Director, the Mayor and Common Council leadership of any request to purchase, acquire or contract for the use of new Surveillance Technology that is not connected to the City-wide Network.  The Department will post on the Department’s website notice to the public of its intent to obtain or use new Surveillance Technology. If the Mayor or Common Council leadership request that a Department notify residents, the Department will work with IT to create a process for residents to submit feedback and comments.  The Department will hold a public meeting if requested by the Mayor or Common Council Leadership.

(d)                     If a Department needs to move a camera location on the City-wide enterprise camera system, or activates new functions not previously approved, or adds a new camera of a previously-approved type, the Department will notify the Mayor and Common Council Leadership and the Alder(s) of the affected district(s).  The Mayor, Common Council Leadership, or Alder(s) of the affected district(s) will coordinate with the Department to notify the residents, including creating a variety of notification and outreach mechanisms for residents to submit feedback and comments. The Department will hold a public meeting if requested by the Mayor, Common Council Leadership, or the Alder of the district where the camera is located.

(5)                     Reporting Process.

(a)                     Each Department will conduct an annual review of its Surveillance Technology and ensure compliance with this ordinance. 

(b)                     Each Department will complete an Annual Surveillance Technology Report which will be submitted to the Common Council through a resolution. The Annual Surveillance Technology Report will include:

1.                     An inventory of current Surveillance Technology and the applicable policies;

2.                     How the Department has used the data collected by its Surveillance Technology;

3.                     How any Surveillance Data is being shared with other entities;

4.                     How well Surveillance Data management protocols are safeguarding individual information; and

5                     Whether the Department has received any complaints or concerns about its Surveillance Technology use and the resolution of said complaints.                     

(c)                     The Common Council shall review and take action on the resolution accompanying the Annual Surveillance Technology Report. 

(6)                     Exceptions. This ordinance does not apply to the following:

(a)                     Federal Property Disposition Programs.  If the Surveillance Technology is available through federal property disposition programs and/or the purchase or acquisition decision must be executed quickly, such acquisition may be made. However, if the Surveillance Technology is obtained under this subdivision, the Department must apply for approval as described in subsection (4) within thirty (30) days and before installation or use of said equipment.

(b)                     Emergency Situations.  In the event of an emergency, that poses an imminent and serious risk of death or substantial bodily harm, a Department may acquire Surveillance Technology without prior Common Council approval, for the sole purpose of preventing or mitigating such risk, if the Department reasonably believes the acquisition of such Surveillance Technology will result in reduction of said risk. The Department’s use of the Surveillance Technology must cease when such risk no longer exists or the use of the Surveillance Technology can no longer reasonably reduce the risk. The Department shall apply for approval of the Surveillance Technology per subsection (4) of this ordinance within thirty (30) days of cessation of the risk that prompted purchase of said Technology. The use of the Surveillance Technology must be documented in the Department’s Annual Surveillance Technology Report.

(c)                     Technical Patch or Upgrade.  A Department, in consultation with the City Information Technology Department, may apply a technical patch or upgrade that is necessary to mitigate threats to the City’s infrastructure, even if the patch or upgrade materially alters the surveillance capabilities of the technology. However, if such patch or upgrade does materially alter the surveillance capability of the technology, it must be highlighted in the Annual Surveillance Technology Report.

(d)                     Sensitive Surveillance Technology Information.  Sensitive Surveillance Technology Information is exempt from the requirements in the ordinance.  Departments will provide the basis for exemption to the Information Technology Director. The Information Technology Director will notify the Mayor and Common Council Leadership of the exemption for mayoral approval.”