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Measures Underway to Improve Public Safety at Gas and Convenience Stores

7-11 Robbery, 25 July, 2011

The bill aims to reduce robberies such as this one at a convenience store in north College Park

In the last Council meeting, the City Council adopted a resolution in support of measures to decrease robberies in the County by enhancing convenience store and gas station safety; registering convenience stores and gas stations; requiring training of convenience store employees and gas station employees; providing for security; providing for cash management; providing for visibility and signage; and providing for a grace period and noncompliance; and generally relating to convenience store and gas station safety.

This County bill bill CB-48-2013, introduced by Councilmembers Olson and Franklin, would require every convenience store and gas station open between 11 pm and 6 am to register and to require each of their employees to take a safety training course before starting work. They include having a security system in place with a drop safe and security cameras.

According to the bill, all security cameras will need to be set to report the actual date and time. Only management can have access to the cameras.

A convenience store owner needs to install a drop safe bolted to the floor behind the cash register or in an adjacent office. Both locations must be in view of a high resolution surveillance camera.

A gas station owner without a convenience store will need to install a drop safe or establish another mechanism to ensure that no more than one hundred and fifty dollars ($150.00) is in the cash register on the premises anytime between the hours of 11 :00 p.m. to 6:00 am.

A gas station owner without a convenience store will need to install a secured surveillance camera system with a minimum of three highly visible digital, high-resolution color cameras that produces a minimum of sixty (60) pixels per foot. One camera will need to be placed above the cash registers at an angle to identify persons, one camera will need to be placed in view of the public entrance and one camera will need to be placed to view the exterior parking lot. Stores will need to record 24 hours a day and motion sensing cameras will record when activated.

Recordings will need to be be retained for at least 30 days, even if a store is closed. An exception can be made for natural occurrences that would affect camera function. Security cameras will have an annual test photo and maintenance log showing maintenance every four months. All security cameras will be set to report the actual date and time. Only management will have access to the cameras.

A gas station will need to provide window only access if the gas station is open anytime between the hours of 11 :00 p.m.to 6:00 a.m. and if the gas station currently has window only access on-site.

Cash Management
As a condition of their use and occupancy permit, convenience stores and gas stations cannot keep more than one hundred fifty dollars ($150) in any cash register on the premises at all  times between 11 :00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m.

A written cash management policy that limits cash on hand in the convenience store or gas station from 11 :00 p.m. to 6:00 a.m. will be provided to all employees.

Visibility and Signage.
All convenience stores and gas stations will need to maintain an unobstructed line of sight allowing a clear view of and from the cash register and sales area. Windows and doors will be clear of all items that would obstruct a clear view from three feet above the ground to at least six feet above the ground.

Convenience stores and gas stations will need to post highly visible window signs in English and Spanish detailing: (1) There is a drop safe in the store; (2) Employees do not have access to the safe; (3) There is an active security system on the premises, if applicable; (4) ‘No Loitering’ 5 and ‘No Trespassing’; and (5) There is limited cash in cash registers at anytime between the 6 hours of 11 :00 p.m. and 6:00 a.m.

 

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