Tucson City Hall expected to heighten security measures - Tucson News Now

Tucson City Hall expected to heighten security measures

By Carissa Planalp

TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - Tucson's City Hall is adding security measures but details on the plan are limited.

Council member Steve Kozachik confirms visitors will only be able to enter city hall through the north entrance.

When you walk inside the lobby, you'll find the front information desk has been stripped away from the wall, a number of orange construction cones are on the ground, and an unplugged metal detector stands near the hallway leading to the elevators. 

A spokesperson for the office of Mayor Jonathan Rothschild says the Tucson Police Department is in charge of an expanded security plan which, according to a report from the Associated Press, will include metal detectors, cameras, and additional security staff to screen visitors and their check their bags.

Back in February, Tucson Police Chief Roberto Villaseñor confirmed at least one Tucson Police officer had been assigned to protect the mayor on a "temporary" basis.

Villaseñor also told Tucson News Now that a committee had discussed several options for security, and his recommendation was a mix of private security plus TPD presence.  He said it would be a "temporary pilot" to determine the effectiveness both on security and the City Hall working environment.

But Tucson Police say their role is to help the city figure out the best security options.

"Tucson Police provided a threat assessment for the building and with that we're assisting with implementing security procedures and providing training for those assisting with security," said Sgt. Chris Widmer with the Tucson Police Department.

The people who will be checking you and your bags will include a Tucson Police officer, but it will be the same officer who watches over the mayor.

Back in February, Tucson Police assigned an officer to protect the mayor. Once city hall expands its security plan, that officer will be helping a new security guard downstairs.

"City hall is a high profile public building and it has a lot of traffic in and out of it every day," Widmer said. "The goal here is just to make it a safer, more secure area for the employees, and the guests, and the visitors."

Tucson News Now is still trying to get answers on how much this extra security costs, but according to council member Kozachik, the costs were included in the new approved budget.

Copyright 2013 Tucson News Now. All rights reserved.

  • Local newsMore>>

  • KOLD INVESTIGATES: Saving your receipts can get you cash back

    KOLD INVESTIGATES: Saving your receipts can get you cash back

    Thursday, May 25 2017 1:25 AM EDT2017-05-25 05:25:28 GMT
    (Source: Tucson News Now)(Source: Tucson News Now)

    Two local savvy shoppers said they've saved serious cash over the last few years by saving their store receipts and using certain apps. 

    Two local savvy shoppers said they've saved serious cash over the last few years by saving their store receipts and using certain apps. 

  • BREAKING

    UPDATE: Barricade situation now over on west side

    UPDATE: Barricade situation now over on west side

    Thursday, May 25 2017 1:19 AM EDT2017-05-25 05:19:07 GMT
    Police activity near El Rio Golf Course. (Source: Tucson News Now)Police activity near El Rio Golf Course. (Source: Tucson News Now)

    Authorities had been dealing with a barricaded subject at a home on the west side of Tucson Wednesday afternoon.

    Authorities had been dealing with a barricaded subject at a home on the west side of Tucson Wednesday afternoon.

  • G.O.P. Health Care bill worries

    G.O.P. Health Care bill worries

    Thursday, May 25 2017 1:10 AM EDT2017-05-25 05:10:59 GMT

    More than 23 million Americans could be uninsured by 2026 if the G.O.P. health bill goes through. 

    More than 23 million Americans could be uninsured by 2026 if the G.O.P. health bill goes through. 

  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Parents make heartbreaking decision over son with autism

    Parents make heartbreaking decision over son with autism

    Wednesday, May 24 2017 11:10 AM EDT2017-05-24 15:10:16 GMT
    KMOV has chosen not to identify him by name or show pictures of what he currently looks like. (Credit: Wallens)KMOV has chosen not to identify him by name or show pictures of what he currently looks like. (Credit: Wallens)

    A parent's love knows no bounds. But what happens when you truly believe your child is going to harm himself or someone else? One family tells News 4 they made a heartbreaking decision about their son with autism, all because they felt they had no other options. 

    A parent's love knows no bounds. But what happens when you truly believe your child is going to harm himself or someone else? One family tells News 4 they made a heartbreaking decision about their son with autism, all because they felt they had no other options. 

  • Breaking

    Kirbyville High School principal resigns, then shoots, kills self in parking lot

    Kirbyville High School principal resigns, then shoots, kills self in parking lot

    Wednesday, May 24 2017 11:31 AM EDT2017-05-24 15:31:33 GMT

    Following his resignation Tuesday afternoon, the principal of Kirbyville High School walked out his truck, where he apparently shot and killed himself, according to police.

    Following his resignation Tuesday afternoon, the principal of Kirbyville High School walked out his truck, where he apparently shot and killed himself, according to police.

Powered by Frankly