No more cash for Falkirk’s CCTV

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Hopes of a funding boost for Falkirk’s CCTV system were dashed this week when the government confirmed it was not giving extra cash.

COSLA, the local government organisation, has set up a working group to look at introducing a country-wide provision to cover towns and cities.

It sought the views of the Scottish Government who responded by making it clear that it is up to the local authorities and the police to fund any CCTV provision.

In a bid to save cash, Falkirk Council has already been forced to cut the time police civilian staff monitor CCTV footage.

From January 1, the 82 remote cameras that cover Falkirk town centre and other ‘hot spots’ around the district will continue to run 24/7 – but the images will only be viewed at selected peak times.

The move will save the local authority £75,000 annually.

Councillor Jim Blackwood, the council’s public protection spokesman, is supportive of the COSLA initiative and disappointed at the latest blow.

He said: “Around Scotland there are different funding models where Police Scotland fully fund the service, and then places like Falkirk where the council pay 75 per cent towards the total cost and the police 25 per cent.

“The Scottish Government introduced the single police force in Scotland and I believe it is their responsibility to look to establish a national CCTV network that will give communities confidence to enjoy town centres and community facilities. Anything less will be a miserable failure on their part.”