Firms slow to sign up for CCTV scheme
Last updated at 19:49, Thursday, 26 July 2012
Only 15 businesses have stepped forward to help pay for monitoring of Workington’s CCTV system.
Live monitoring of the cameras is due to stop at the end of this month because of a lack of funding.
But Allerdale council is prepared to contribute £10,000 a year if business owners and other groups help to meet the costs.
The cameras will carry on filming in towns such as Workington, Aspatria and Maryport. However, there will be no one there to watch ‘live’ footage.
Workington’s Safe and Sound Partnership has written to 100 traders in Workington asking them to contribute £40 each to help pay for the monitoring.
So far, six businesses have declined to contribute.
The council is not legally obliged to provide CCTV monitoring and decided to withdraw the service in a bid to save an estimated £80,000 a year.
Tony McMullen, the partnership’s business crime manager, said: “If the other businesses don’t reply and we only have the 15 that have signed up then it will still be under threat.
“We don’t know what our next steps will be yet if businesses don’t continue to sign up. We will find out what our options are when we meet with Allerdale council at the start of next month.
“Everybody benefits from the system, even those who are not part of the partnership, so it is vital that they show their support and help us try to save it.”
There are 19 CCTV cameras in Workington. Mr McMullen said they were used in more of the 263 reported incidents in the town centre last year.
The system, which covers Oxford Street to Nook Street, was set up in the town in 2004 and records 24 hours a day. It is monitored by Allerdale council for around 40 hours a week.
Mr McMullen added: “We still need to get more businesses on board and there are more than half the businesses contacted who still need to reply so we would urge them to do so as soon as possible.
“We’ve had five or six businesses say that they are not willing to contribute but so far the feedback has been positive.
“We need the system in the town because it helps to reduce crime levels, fear of crime and anti-social behaviour, and has increased the number of crimes solved.”
The partnership will meet with Allerdale council on August 10.
First published at 19:25, Thursday, 26 July 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk
Have your say
Yes, it's a (fairly) vital but not absolutely essential service, and if you're a small business struggling to survive in this climate, another Â£40 bill might just tip the balance between profit and loss.Could the T&S please make it clear how often this Â£40 needs to be paid? Every week, month or year. Thank you.
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