Covert Cameras Result in Investigation of Turnpike Authority

BOSTON

Hidden cameras installed in Boston Turnpike Authority
headquarters resulted in criticism of Chairman Matthew
Amorello by two former board members.

“We’re not dealing with the CIA here, we’re dealing with the Turnpike Authority,” says former board member Jordan Levy. “What’s so secretive that we have to have hidden cameras?”

Amorello claims that the hidden cameras, disguised as smoke detectors and removed on Aug. 17, were used to protect private records and not to spy on employees. According to the Boston Herald, it is not illegal to use cameras to monitor public offices under Massachusetts law.

According to a public statement given to The Boston Herald by Andrew Good, Amorello’s attorney, “The Turnpike’s executive offices contain sensitive . . . financial data and real estate transaction planning information which could be improperly exploited if obtained prematurely and without authorization.”

The Boston Herald story also points out that Amorello’s concealed camera system appeared to stop recording on July 10, which is the date of the Big Dig collapse when Milena Del Valle, 38, was killed.

The cameras were said to be motion activated. Although Amorello claims recordings were made after-hours, footage has been forthcoming that shows video recorded during normal working hours.

Robert Marino, former facilities manager, was fired on Aug. 18, after disclosing the existence of the covert cameras. According to Marino, Amorello is correct in that the cameras were installed for after- hours use.

Jon Carlisle, spokesman for Transportation Secretary John Cogliano, says that Turnpike officials continue to probe the issue of $365,000 in payouts to top managers in sick days and vacation time. Cogliano adds that these individuals retired or quit their jobs just before Amorello left.

Amorello’s funding arrangements with regards to his ongoing use of his attorney, is also under investigation by the Turnpike Authority.

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