Cameras focus on a safer city

THE streets of Fairfield are set to become safer.

Fairfield Council will spend $1.6 million of ratepayers' money installing security cameras across the CBD.

The council will divert the $400,000 it spends annually monitoring a handful of cameras in Cabramatta.

Mayor Frank Carbone said during the past 15 years, the council had spent $7 million on a few cameras to monitor the streets of Cabramatta, when it was notorious for drugs and crime.

He said now that Cabramatta was clean, the council had decided to hand over the monitoring of those cameras to Cabramatta Police.

The cameras will continue to record digitally rather than the council paying for someone to monitor the footage and change the tapes when needed.

"There's going to be three phases in this new program," he said.

"The first will target public spaces such as town centres in our local government area.

"The second will include implementing cameras around our council assets to prevent rubbish dumping, graffiti and the burning down of buildings.

"The third will be installing them in key gateway sites such as roads.

"If people intend to do the wrong thing, then their chances of getting caught increase tremendously."

He said the council would liaise with police about crime hot spots before selecting sites.

"We will also be asking police if they need mobile cameras," he said.

"Police can put these in hot spots to assist in their current investigations. We will fund that.

"This is a state government issue. We are the first council that's had such an extensive program to roll-out cameras when it's not our responsibility."

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