Council calls for state government support for CCTV in Carlton

Council calls for state government support for CCTV in Carlton
Brendan Rees

The City of Melbourne is hoping the state government will support its efforts to improve safety in the Carlton area by providing funding for new CCTV cameras.

The council’s draft Annual Plan and Budget for 2023–24 proposes a partnership with the state government, to expand, enhance and upgrade the Safe City Camera Program (SCCP).

This includes expanding the camera network to Lygon St in Carlton, as well as exploring ways to contribute to perceived community safety concerns, such as cleanliness, graffiti and dumped rubbish,” with a capital expenditure allocation of $520,000.

However, a notice of motion put forward by Cr Rohan Leppert, which, at the time of publishing, was considered by councillors at their May 30 Future Melbourne Committee meeting, requested whether the state government would be willing to pay for the capital outlay for any future expansion of the SCCP.

If so, the motion said, “where possible, requests that any agreement is reflected in the final 2023–24 Budget”.

“Any future expansions of the SCCP will therefore only be contemplated where the state government provides the cost of purchase and installation of new cameras, with any exceptions to this policy to be determined by express decision of the council in open session, on notice,” it said.

The motion also noted the most significant reviews to the SCCP policies were made in 2010, some 14 years after inception, and “now is the appropriate time for another review”.

Many residents and business owners have expressed their concern about increased thefts, assaults, and other crime in Carlton, as well as a lack of police presence in recent years.

Carlton Inc. executive officer Phillip Mansour welcomed the council’s commitment to making Carlton a safer place.

“We requested that assistance and they have put that to action, which is a good outcome for the precinct,” he said.

“Cameras will assist in creating a safe environment for residents and visitors. It deters untoward behaviour and helps in crime detection.”

The council has budgeted $283,000 for the renewal and maintenance of the SSCP in each of the next four financial years. •

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