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City of Green Bay, mayor sued over recording devices at City Hall

surveillance signage.jpeg
Posted at 6:37 PM, Feb 21, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-21 19:37:17-05

GREEN BAY (NBC 26) — A lawsuit was filed Tuesday in Brown County over recording devices located in City Hall.

The lawsuit lists the Wisconsin State Senate, state Sen. Andre Jacque, Green Bay resident Anthony Theisen and Jane Doe as plaintiffs, while the city of Green Bay and Mayor Eric Genrich are defendants, according to court documents.

NBC 26 reported earlier this month that the cameras are raising concerns over privacy.

Microphones were added to city hall's surveillance system on the first and second floors between the winter of 2021 and the summer of last year.

The issue was brought up by Alderman Chris Wery during a Common Council meeting on Feb. 7. The Wisconsin Legislative Council issued a memo to State Senator Andre Jacque, who asked about the legality of the current surveillance setup at city hall. The memo said without a surveillance sign posted, a court could rule a party did not consent to being recorded.

State Senate Attorney Ryan Walsh claims the city's use of recording devices in city hall is illegal, and had asked Mayor Eric Genrich that the audio surveillance be shut down, and all recordings get deleted.

The city responded last week, denying that request. City leaders say its security system is legal and commonplace.