Police camera network could grow by 35 percent under Louisville - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Police camera network could grow by 35 percent under Louisville budget

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – Mayor Greg Fischer’s budget plan recommends spending $300,000 to expand a network of police surveillance cameras by up to 35 percent, according to estimates.

It also would provide funding for Louisville Metro Police to add the department’s first drone, which would be used for special events such as Thunder over Louisville and during the Kentucky Derby Festival, LMPD spokesman Dwight Mitchell said.

Fischer introduced his $822 million spending plan for the upcoming fiscal year last week. The Metro Council’s budget committee plans to take public comment on it tonight.

The bulk of the proposal – about 58 percent – would be spent on police, fire and other public safety agencies.  Besides adding cameras, Fischer wants to hire more firefighters and police officers and boost police overtime in the city’s most violent neighborhoods.

READ MAYOR FISCHER’S PROPOSED BUDGET

The mayor’s budget includes $1.9 million in state and federal forfeiture funds for police use. The federal dollars would buy body armor, including for the department’s SWAT team, while the state money would cover the cost of the drone and new cameras.

If approved for the funds, police plan to add 30 to 50 cameras to the 140-camera MetroWatch system that is monitored at the city’s Real Time Crime Center, Mitchell said in an email.

“At current time, we have a number of locations in mind but are not ready to make those locations public as they are only proposed locations,” he said.

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