Cam­era bid for Front St

Port Douglas & Mossman Gazette - - NEWS - Janessa Ek­ert

DOU­GLAS Shire Coun­cil will ap­ply for fund­ing to in­stall se­cu­rity cam­eras across Moss­man and se­cu­rity light­ing in Port Dou­glas on the back of a pe­ti­tion by fed up busi­nesses over street of­fend­ing.

Moss­man Bak­ery owner Stacey Pont, who spear­headed the pe­ti­tion, is call­ing for CCTV cam­eras on Front St in a bid to act as a de­ter­rent against “reck­less and care­less” be­hav­iour. Mrs Pont said a re­cent fire caused by some­one who threw a lit cig­a­rette butt into a bin out­side the bak­ery had been the fi­nal straw.

“The fire was so in­tense that fire fighters had to get up on our roof and hose it down due to the risk the heat was cre­at­ing,” she said in the pe­ti­tion.

“Our bak­ery and the liveli­hood of eight res­i­dents could have burnt to the ground due to the reck­less and care­less be­hav­iour that oc­curs fre­quently in Front St.”

She vis­ited ev­ery shop front on the street and said 55 of the 60 busi­nesses backed the pe­ti­tion, which was signed by 98 peo­ple.

Coun­cil voted to sup­port the pe­ti­tion at Tues­day’s meet­ing and will make a sub­mis­sion to the Safer Com­mu­ni­ties Fund to in­stall CCTV cam­eras in Front St and se­cu­rity light­ing in Port Dou­glas.

“I think it’s great that the coun­cil has lis­tened to what the busi­ness com­mu­nity in Moss­man has wanted for many years now,” Mrs Pont said. “And ap­ply­ing for the grant … is a step in the right di­rec­tion.”

Port Dou­glas Se­nior Con­sta­ble Mag­gie Mead­ows said in­creased CCTV footage was a safety mea­sure and a way of mon­i­tor­ing the area.

“Al­though CCTV may not stop crime it can as­sist po­lice with solv­ing of­fences when they do oc­cur,” she said.

Dou­glas Shire Mayor Ju­lia Leu said small busi­ness own­ers were sick of ran­dom van­dal­ism.

“We have fielded some real con­cerns from many small busi­nesses,” she said.

“Coun­cil be­lieves these cam­eras could help de­ter that reck­less mi­nor­ity.

“This im­proved sur­veil­lance could also em­power po­lice to gather ev­i­dence and solve any street crime.”

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