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Serving Northern St. Louis County, Minnesota

Public input sought on police body cam policies

Stephanie Ukkola
Posted 1/14/22

SOUDAN- At the Breitung township meeting on Dec. 23, Police Chief Reing reported he is pursuing the purchase of body cameras for the Breitung Police Department. “It’s a good thing,” …

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Public input sought on police body cam policies

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SOUDAN- At the Breitung township meeting on Dec. 23, Police Chief Reing reported he is pursuing the purchase of body cameras for the Breitung Police Department.
“It’s a good thing,” said Reing. “It’s about accountability, for the officers and the people. Not having body cams is a thing of the past,” he said. Reing said the cameras would sync with the squad cameras and would back up to cloud storage free of charge, and case data would be available indefinitely if needed. He said cameras would cost $1,095 each. Private citizens have offered to donate $700 in funding so far.
Reing said he will draft a policy defining what is considered public data and private data consistent with the Minnesota Post Board and collaborate with other law enforcement agencies that will also be getting body cameras soon.
A 30-day public comment period is now open. Comments can be made to Chief Dan Reing at daniel.reing@breitungtownship.org or “Public Comments on Camera,” PO Box 6, Soudan, MN 55782 or to the township clerk.
A special meeting will be held on Thursday, Feb. 10 at 12 noon to discuss and gather public input on body cameras.

Skating rink open
The Soudan skating rink will be open weekdays from 4 to 8 p.m., and weekends from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. On holidays or other days that school is closed the rink is open from 11 a.m. to closing. The rink may close for inclement weather.
The board decided to discontinue COVID-safe skating rules that were imposed in the past.
A separate skating rink for small children is now open.

Other news
In other news, the board:
• Made several fund transfers and changes including: transfering $35,000 to the equipment replacement reserve fund which included $25,000 from the general fund and $10,000 from fire fund; removing the police forfeiture fund account; adding a new park reserve fund account with a transfer of $50,000 from the park fund; transfering $25,000 to the gravel reserve fund using $10,000 from the road and bridge fund and $15,000 from the general fund.
• Approved a partial payment to Jola and Sopp Excavating for $29,362 for their work on sanitary sewer improvements.
• Heard that there has been no communication from the city of Tower on a proposed bike trail maintenance plan for the shared trail from McKinley Park going towards Hoodoo Point. The township will send the city a bill for maintenance done on Tower’s portion of the trail in 2021.
• Received $2,000 from Lake Country Power for improvements to the Soudan Park.
• Passed a resolution to adopt the new McKinley Park rate schedule.
• Renewed the tobacco license for Soudan Store.
• Received a thank you from the Ely Police Department for the opportunity to rent the Breitung police car.
• Approved the police contract with Tower.
The next regular meeting is Thursday, Jan. 27 at 12 noon.

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