COUNCIL bosses have agreed to spend up to almost three quarters of a million pounds upgrading the borough’s CCTV system.
The cash will be used to replace an ageing 14-year-old computer at the heart of the system and set up a wireless network to avoid the crippling rental costs of using BT fibre optic cables to transmit images.
A meeting of Dacorum Borough Council’s cabinet agreed the upgrade, where councillors were told the borough is ‘using the most expensive methods for transmitting our camera images to the control room’.
David Austin, assistant director of neighbourhood delivery, told the meeting: “The CCTV service is at a crossroads. The BT transmission costs were £68,000 this year.”
There are 120 cameras across Hemel Hempstead, Berkhamsted and Tring, and last year they were responsible for the arrests of 504 people. Cameras were first installed in Hemel Hempstead in 1991 and over the following 10 years they were expanded to cover the whole borough.
The upgrade is expected to reduce annual running costs – currently £503,000 – by £80,000.