Councillors will today be asked to approved a £60,000 cash injection to overhaul Fraserburgh’s outdated CCTV system.
But the funds will only be formally released if a fundraising drive to raise a further £10k is successful.
Members of Aberdeenshire Council’s Banff and Buchan Area Committee meeting in Banff this morning will hear that while the existing system is obsolete, it has nevertheless proved very successful.
In a report, Stephen Archer, head of infrastructure services, says: “The feeling of community safety – both actual and perceived – can be a strong contributor to a vibrant and successful town centre for a number of reasons.”
He will say CCTV encourages people to stay longer in the town centre which provides benefit to the night-time economy in particular.
There is also a reduction in the perception or fear of crime and far greater pride within the community.
Councillors will be told that it is a vital tool for the Police and wider justice system, and has resulted in reduced incidents of theft from, and vandalism to, town centre businesses and properties.
Police Scotland would continue to house and monitor the system free of charge, but councillors will hear that the force is unable to fund CCTV installation costs outside of key cities, and that to contribute financially would set an “unmanageable precedent” for other towns.
The total cost of the project - including a five-year maintenance package - will be approximately £70,000.
Mr Archer explains: “The CCTV Working Group have a small amount of money in reserve and have committed to raise the balance from local fundraising and sponsorship.
“Funds will not be released until the group have raised all of the funding to deliver the project which, if approved, could be by early to mid-2019.”
He will add that the project fits under the Fraserburgh Regeneration Partnership Vision and Action Plan for 2016-2021.
Making our streets safer
According to Police Scotland, CCTV coverage is both a deterrent and a crucial aid in crime detection and forms an important part of the evidence base that leads to successful
Evidence suggests that crime detection rates and convictions increase, acts as a disincentive for crime incidents and has not been shown to displace crime incidents to elsewhere in the town.
Working in partnership with Police Scotland, the local CCTV working group has identified five new additional camera sites.
It wants to introduce dome cameras on Hanover street to cover the bus station, Charlotte Street, Deejays Night Club, and the junctions of Mid Street and Cross Street and Broad Street and Mid Street. There are currently cameras on High Street, Shore Street and the corner of Saltoun Square.