Baguio City CCTV ordinance signed into law

BAGUIO CITY — City Mayor Mauricio Domogan has signed an ordinance mandating all business establishments here to install closed circuit television (CCTV) cameras, video recorders and monitors for security purposes.

City Councilor Edgar Avila on Friday said the existing business establishments under ordinance no. 11 series of 2017 will not be able to get a renewal of its business permits until the CCTV requirement has been complied with.

Avila said the country is beginning to embrace the positive effects of technology as part of the process of modernization.

Aside from communication and transportation, the government is gearing towards a modernized criminal justice system, he added.

Based on the report of the Regional Law Enforcement Coordinating Council (RLECC), notable decrease in crimes were recorded between January and December 2011.

The Baguio City Police Office (BCPO) recorded 2,826 cases of theft and robbery incidents between January to December 2010, and recorded only 2,495 cases in the same period in 2011.

The decrease was attributed to the installation of CCTV cameras initiated by some business owners to protect their businesses.

In the definition of terms, “all business establishments” will include restaurants, schools, hospitals, malls, shopping centers, movie houses, theaters, supermarkets, groceries, entertainment centers, office buildings, public utility terminals, banks, shopping malls, department stores, convenience stores, gasoline stations, pawnshops, money changers, all types of night spots and bars, warehouses or general merchandise, and other similar establishments.

The ordinance will also cover boarding houses with a maximum of five rooms or three units and above, car wash, emission test and auto repair shops.

Pawnshops, money changing, lending companies, building for rent or lease, business engaged in accepting or delivering baggage, lotto outlet and the like with or without security personnel whose employees are even less than five are obliged to install at least two CCTVs.

All banks, restaurants, schools, hospitals, shopping malls/centers, movie houses, theaters, supermarkets, groceries, entertainment centers, office buildings, public utility terminals, department/convenience stores, gasoline stations, pawnshops, money changers, all bars, and other business establishments with a minimum business capital of PhP500,000 are also required to install CCTV with corresponding image recorders in their facilities.

Video recordings from the system shall be preserved for 15 days from the date of recording.

Avila said no CCTV camera will be installed in restrooms or comfort rooms, changing room, and other similar areas.

All establishments are required to maintain the privacy and confidentiality of all video feeds and recordings obtained.

The use, viewing, copying, disclosure or publication of said video feeds and recordings shall be strictly prohibited unless ordered by a court of competent jurisdiction; and in connection with and limited to a criminal investigation or prosecution of an offense, punishable by law or regulation provided that the request is made by the City Police director or the National Bureau of Investigation director.

Violators of this ordinance shall pay a fine of PhP5,000 or imprisonment of one year or both upon the discretion of the court. Jojo Lamaria/