Extra $1m to keep watch on criminals
ONE of the “most comprehensive CCTV networks” in the country is set to get a massive boost.
The Gold Coast’s closed-circuit television camera network – which includes 595 cameras at hubs in Southport, Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach and Coolangatta alone – received about $1 million in federal government funding yesterday.
The cash boost comes after hundreds of additional cameras were installed across the city for the Commonwealth Games earlier this year.
Announcing the funding, Gold Coast-based Federal Minister for Tourism, Trade and Investment Steven Ciobo said the cameras were a critical crime-fighting tool.
“The Gold Coast has one of the most comprehensive CCTV networks in the country and I know talking to police this is a critical tool they use,” he said.
Mr Ciobo said the money could be spent on a range of security measures, ranging from security bollards to prevent vehicles from driving into crowds, to lighting dark areas to deter criminals.
“The coalition is providing record funding on counter terrorism but this is a practical way locally, in one of the tourism hot spots of the nation, that we can help safeguard locals and tourists alike,” he said.
“(CCTV) prevents crime and also helps clean up and prosecute those perpetrating crime. None of us want to see a tragedy happen or a mass casualty event.”
Mayor Tom Tate said the funding announcement was a welcome boost for the city.
“We welcome the funding announcement, which will add to the millions of dollars the city already spends annually on a range of public safety initiatives,’’ he said.
In the lead-up to the Games Cr Tate had said he wanted the new cameras to remain in place as a legacy for the city.
“I will be calling on them to leave that infrastructure in place post GC2018,” he said.
“This could see an additional 100-plus cameras added to our network. That’s the message I want every criminal to read – you’re being watched.”