CCTV boost for Cairns CBD
THE city's surveillance network is likely to receive an upgrade to ensure total coverage of the CBD ahead of the G20 finance ministers' meeting.
The 2014 event has strengthened the argument by police and the council to install more closed-circuit television cameras to broaden coverage of the inner-city.
"In terms of G20, I would think that getting more would be paramount," the Far North’s Assistant Commissioner Katarina Carroll said.
"We’ve always wanted more because they’re such a valuable asset."
At present, 90 CCTV cameras are operational in Cairns, 73 of which are located in the CBD.
While the busiest areas are well-covered, police have voiced their concerns about the fringe of the CBD being unmonitored.
Each camera is worth about $30,000, while the CCTV network, including security patrols, costs Cairns Regional Council about $1.6 million a year.
With about 2000 international delegates and media representatives converging on Cairns for the finance ministers’ meeting, the city needed to invest in more cameras now, Ms Carroll said.
"When you have people from all over the world coming here, I think they would feel safer knowing there are cameras ensuring their safety," she said.
Member for Cairns Gavin King and Mayor Bob Manning met yesterday to discuss funding for CCTV assets.
Cr Manning said he was confident the Government would upgrade the city’s security network for the G20 event.
Mr King said he would help the council apply for money through the state’s Local Government and Subsidies program.
"Cairns does need more CCTV cameras and not just because of G20 but that event obviously strengthens our case," he said.
"We need to make a strong case but we’ve demonstrated through the Crime Action Plan and Operation Escalate that we’re serious about public safety in Cairns."
Mr King said the city would also benefit from more mobile cameras, ensuring flexibility in surveillance.
Ms Carroll said she would help the council prepare its case to receive funding.
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