East Lindsey District Council (ELDC) proposes to share community safety functions including CCTV with Boston Borough Council from later this year.
A move they say: “Would save taxpayers £200,000 per year and result in a better quality of service”.
Both Councils already work closely together through the East Lincolnshire Community Safety Partnership (ELCSP) and this would be an extension of that existing arrangement, which also involves Lincolnshire Police.
Whilst still being based in their respective Districts, Community Safety Teams from both Councils would have the remit and ability to support one another across borders.
Community Safety Teams deal with issues such as anti-social behaviour, liaising with local policing teams and delivering the priorities identified by the East Lincolnshire Community Safety Partnership.
As part of its Community Safety Service, East Lindsey District Council operates a CCTV system in partnership with Lincolnshire Police and the Town and Parish Councils in Louth, Skegness, Horncastle, Chapel St Leonards, Alford, Mablethorpe and Ingoldmells.
The District Council, supported by £500 per year from each of the seven Parish Councils, funds the ‘Control Room’, the team to monitor the cameras and the transmission of images and the Town and Parish Councils fund the maintenance of the cameras they own.
Under the proposed new arrangements, the monitoring of the CCTV cameras will move from Skegness to Boston’s state-of-the-art CCTV Monitoring facility; which is recognised as being one of the most advanced in the country.
The images from the cameras will be high definition and transmitted at a lesser price than the Council currently pays.
In addition to the financial savings to the District Council, Town and Parish Councils should also benefit through greater buying power when purchasing replacement cameras in the future and being able to secure better deals on camera maintenance contracts.
Prior to the move to the Boston Control Room, East Lindsey District Council would be investing £425,000 to make improvements to the existing CCTV monitoring network in the District, including replacing all 97 CCTV cameras (57 of which belong to the Town and Parish Councils) and introducing wireless technology to transmit camera images wherever possible.
Where wireless technology isn’t a feasible option, cameras will continue to use a traditional telephone line to feed information to the Control Room.
A spokesman for eldc SAID: “”Since the Council installed its CCTV suite in 2006 at Skegness Police Station, technology has moved on considerably and the changes being made will ensure East Lindsey continues to be monitored by an advanced CCTV system. All 97 cameras will record, all of the time, with footage stored for 31 days; allowing the Police to search back through footage when required.
The Chief Constable of Lincolnshire Police, Neil Rhodes, said: “It’s really encouraging to see East Lindsey District Council investing in modern CCTV technology. In times of financial constraint, it underlines the value of CCTV in helping us to ensure safer communities.“
Community Safety Team Leader at East Lindsey District Council, Jon Challen, said: “The Council is constantly looking at new ways to operate that provide greater value for money to residents and a better quality of service. This arrangement will do both, make the service more resilient and save substantial sums of money for taxpayers each year into the future.”