During the Wilkes-Barre Parking Authority’s January reorganizational meeting board members reviewed both the previous and current renewed Hawkeye Security Solutions contract in which the parking authority agrees to pay Hawkeye $100,000 per year for the three-year term. This is the same rate the authority initially agreed to pay Hawkeye to offset the cost of the purchase and installation of the cameras at the city parking garages.
In addition to the cash payments to Hawkeye the arrangement also commits the authority to provide six free parking spaces at the Parking Lot East each month, according to the Surveillance Camera Monitoring Agreement, Section 2(d), Free Monthly Parking Spaces:
Client shall provide to Hawkeye six monthly parking spaces in Parking Lot East at no charge for the use of Hawkeye and its subcontractors.
According to several other vendor contracts obtained by the Independent Gazette, the authority typically charges a monthly rate of $70 for each leased space on contracts extending two or more years. This would imply the authority is bestowing to Hawkeye $5,040 worth of free parking annually over and above the $100,000 per year mandated by the agreement.
Greg Barrouk, vice-president of Hawkeye and deputy city administrator for Wilkes-Barre, informed the Gazette via an email response: “[The reserved spaces were] strictly for the construction vehicles. We do not utilize any spaces and haven’t since the initial project began,” referring to the initial rollout and installation of the Hawkeye System. Barrouk later called back to report that he had learned that those six spaces were indeed being utilized by Legion Security Services employees, ones who man the Hawkeye surveillance system under contract with Hawkeye.
In April 2013 Hawkeye reduced Legion staffing to just 12.6 hours per day, and announced that Hawkeye would rely more on light-duty police officers after the Wilkes-Barre School Board cut its ties to Hawkeye by eliminating the board’s funding.
Trent Miller, co-owner of Legion Security Services, told the Gazette that his company has only ever possessed three cards for the Parking Lot East facility since the company entered into an arrangement with Hawkeye and that those cards are used exclusively by Legion employees who are on duty monitoring the Hawkeye system. Miller also noted that Legion employees working at Legion offices located in the Luzerne Bank Building park in the central garage (the Intermodal decking), for which Legion pays LAZ Parking, managers for the Wilkes-Barre Parking Authority, $70 per month for each space. “Who has the other three cards, or if they’ve ever been used? I couldn’t tell you — I just know we’ve only ever had three,” said Miller.