WATERVILLE — The City Council is expected Tuesday to consider awarding a $114,885 contract to a company to buy body-worn cameras for the Police Department.

Funding for the body cameras would come from a 2021-22 bond in which the city allocated $176,000 for the purchase of police body cameras.

The department has been asking for the cameras since 2021, according to a memorandum to Mayor Jay Coelho and city councilors from police Chief William Bonney.

“Recording interaction with the public has become incredibly important for the transparency of police departments around the country, and in fact most departments are utilizing body worn cameras,” Bonney wrote in the memo.

A recent study of the Waterville Police Department by the International Association of Chiefs of Police said a contemporary policing model requires full transparency, and it is a well-established police practice to capture law enforcement interactions on video. It is critical for accountability, community relations, building of trust and the protection of both officers and the city, the study said.

Bonney has recommended accepting a $114,885 bid submitted by LensLock Inc., based in Tampa, Florida, as the best and most fiscally responsible option for the city. He said the offer was better than the $145,657 bid by Axon and $76,536 bid from Motorola Solutions.


The intention is to buy 24 cameras, one for every patrol officer and patrol sergeant, Bonney said Monday.

A growing number of police departments in Maine use body cameras, including Bangor, Brewer, Old Town, Orono and South Portland, as well as the Penobscot County Sheriff’s Office.

In other matters Tuesday, the City Council is expected to consider:

• Rezoning part of 180 West River Road, south of Vining Drive, from Institutional to Solar Farm District, and 265 and 267 West River Road from Residential-B to Solar Farm District to allow Thomas College to build solar arrays. The council took a first vote Sept. 5 to approve the changes.

• Rezoning part of 150 Kennedy Memorial Drive from Commercial-C to Airport Industrial to allow Price Enterprises LLC to build a solar farm. The council held a first vote Sept. 5 on the proposal.

• Accepting a $270,340 grant from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security to replace personal protective equipment for the Fire Department. The Waterville, Albion and China Village fire departments applied for the regional grant through the federal Emergency Management Agency. Waterville’s match is $15,555 for a total award of $155,550 to the city’s Fire Department.

Tuesday’s council meeting is scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. at The Elm at 21 College Ave.

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