So, the murder crime rate is already approaching critical levels and critics are looking to just about anything to blame. The latest case in point is the cities multi-million dollar effort to deter crime with the help of security cameras. However, a recent report cites that most of the cameras aren’t working. It’s probably not the best piece of news to release if they are hoping to, in fact, deter crime.
Maybe in an effort to backtrack that data a little, Everett Gillison, the mayor’s chief of staff and deputy mayor for public safety, recognizes that the cameras aren’t in tip top shape. He admits that the number of functioning cameras dropped to 35 percent in the fall, when the city hired an outside contractor to do maintenance. But, since then, he insists the number of functioning cameras has risen to 67 percent and the city has hopes to have 90 percent working by the end of the summer.
So, what’s with the conflicting data? Well, apparently more problems within the government may be the culprit. The report describes a system in which separate records were kept by the Police Department and the Office of Innovation and Technology regarding the location and condition of the cameras. It should be no surprise that those separate reports also conflict with one another.
But, whether they work or not is apparently of no concern to some area officials.
“Everywhere we go in the community, they want more cameras. I have a waiting list of 140 areas that would like to have these cameras in,” Gillison said. “I don’t have the dollars literally to put them up, but I know I have a lot of people who want them.”