Ex­tra $1m to keep watch on crim­i­nals

The Gold Coast Bulletin - - NEWS - NI­CHOLAS MCELROY ni­cholas.mcelroy@news.com.au

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.”

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