COUN­CIL PUSH FOR CAM­ERAS

The Gazette (Derwent Valley) - - FRONT PAGE - JAMES KITTO

CRIM­I­NAL be­hav­iour in New Nor­folk could soon be re­duced with the Der­went Val­ley Coun­cil ask­ing for more se­cu­rity cam­eras to be in­stalled at coun­cil-owned prop­er­ties.

The coun­cil wants to in­stall 13 sur­veil­lance cam­eras across a num­ber of New Nor­folk prop­er­ties, in­clud­ing a south­fac­ing cam­era at the Der­went Val­ley Coun­cil cham­bers in Cir­cle St and one in Tank St mon­i­tor­ing traf­fic flow.

Der­went Val­ley Mayor Mar­tyn Evans said the in­stal­la­tion of new cam­eras, which is ex­pected to cost about $95,000, would go a long way in de­tect­ing and de­ter­ring crim­i­nal ac­tiv­ity.

“Hav­ing more cam­eras around the streets of New Nor­folk presents an op­por­tu­nity go­ing for­ward to pro­vide more safety and it will as­sist with polic­ing,” Cr Evans said.

“It will be great for our com­mu­nity and I think it’s a great ini­tia­tive by the coun­cil fol­low­ing the Fed­eral Govern­ment­funded in­stal­la­tion of cam­eras on High Street.”

Af­ter a string of van­dal­ism and arson at­tacks at New Nor­folk’s Wil­low Court in re­cent months, which saw the de­struc­tion of the his­toric Glenora House, Cr Evans said 24-hour mon­i­tor­ing of the area would help pro­tect the precinct.

“Wil­low Court is a na­tional trea­sure for us and the coun­cil has been mind­ful of the re­cent van­dal­ism there,” Cr Evans said.

“We ex­pect hav­ing cam­eras around the precinct will as­sist in pre­vent­ing fur­ther crime.”

New Nor­folk Po­lice Sergeant Chris Hey said new se­cu­rity cam­eras would be in­stru­men­tal in fight­ing crime, but would not stop it al­to­gether.

“Cam­eras only do so much,” Sgt Hey said.

“But there’s cer­tainly been in­ci­dents of crime on the streets where if there had been cam­eras ap­pro­pri­ately po­si­tioned, it would have as­sisted po­lice with in­ves­ti­ga­tions.”

Sgt Hey said the cam­eras would be used for se­cu­rity mea­sures only.

“They are for ev­ery­body’s pro­tec­tion,” he said. “From our per­spec­tive se­cu­rity cam­eras are in­ves­tiga­tive tools for po­lice to look back on when some­thing ma­jor hap­pens. They aren’t there for some­one to be con­stantly watch­ing.” Cr Evans agreed. “There may be a few peo­ple who feel like this will be a case of Big Brother watch­ing, but that’s not the case at all,” he said.

“Our re­spon­si­bil­ity is to pro­vide safety for all res­i­dents and de­liver safe out­comes for all places to live. I would wel­come more cam­eras go­ing for­ward, and that’s some­thing we as a coun­cil can look into.”

Cr Evans also con­firmed the coun­cil was seek­ing re­quests for pro­posal for se­cu­rity im­prove­ments to in­fra­struc­ture in­side the coun­cil ad­min­is­tra­tion build­ing and works de­pot.

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