Brookfield village trustees on Sept. 27 took a pass on a pair of proposals regarding the installation of surveillance cameras at some businesses and at a pair of intersections along Maple Avenue.

Trustees voted 4-1 to defeat a new law, proposed by the village’s police chief, which would have mandated surveillance cameras inside certain businesses.

The businesses targeted by the new law would have been stores open during late-night hours, liquor stores, convenience stores and other businesses where there are numerous cash transactions.

Police Chief Steven Stelter argued that the presence of cameras would deter crime and that they would be an invaluable aid in trying to solve crimes.

But Cathy Colgrass Edwards, one of those voting to reject the law, said while she recognized the advantage of having cameras in those businesses, it wasn’t the local government’s job to mandate it.

“I feel individual business owners should be the ones to decide. I don’t feel the need to put the burden of the cost on them myself,” said Edwards.

Michael Towner, alone in voting to require the cameras, expressed frustration with fellow trustees for what he perceived as inaction on an important issue.

“I see as a board we’ve become very good at figuring out how not to do things,’ Towner said. “We find a way to talk ourselves out of it. It’d be refreshing for us to lead for a change.”

No go on red light cameras

Trustees on Sept. 27 also decided against moving forward with a proposal to install red light cameras at two intersections in the village – at 31st Street and Maple Avenue and at Ogden and Maple avenues.

Last month, the board pondered a pitch by SafeSpeed LLC, which said it had identified the two intersections as potential locations for the cameras.

While the cameras themselves were not warmly received by trustees, it was cost that turned out to be the deal-breaker.

It would cost the village more than $33,000 to install LED stoplights at the intersections, and the SafeSpeed contract also required that the village indemnify the company against lawsuits arising from the operation of the cameras.

-Bob Uphues