County approves tag reader camera purchase

Published 10:05 am Tuesday, December 26, 2023

The Troup County Board of Commissioners has approved the purchase of four tag reader cameras for the Troup County Sheriff’s Office.

TCSO Major Keith Flory said the cameras will replace older ones that were purchased before Sheriff James Woodruff’s administration and are approximately 10 years old.

“They’ve done a lot of good for the community, but they’re getting very old,” Flory said. “The readers pick up all kinds of information, wanted persons, drug dealers that have been flagged and everything else.”

The tag readers are normally $18,000 per camera but Flory said they were able to work out a deal with Motorola to purchase four for $30,681.

Flory also recommended an optional add-on for the cameras that will automatically verify tag reader hits through the Georgia Crime Information Center.

Shawn Whitmer with Synergistics Software INC. explained that when the readers alert on tags, there can be some latency in the flag being removed from the state file, so hits need to be verified. The optional third-party software automatically runs the information through GCIC and gets results in seconds rather than officers having to verify it manually through 911.

A three-year lease for the auto-verification upgrade costs $2,900.

Whitmer said the new generation of tag readers can read plates better as well. The older ones had issues reading tags at certain angles, especially in bright sunlight, and they couldn’t read paper plates. The newer ones can.

The commissioners approved funds for both the four new cameras and the auto-verification upgrade.

The purchase will be made using SPLOST V funds designated for the sheriff’s office.