Liberal Nationals take law and order to the polls

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HASTINGS Liberal MP Neale Burgess is ramping up the law-and-order debate while campaigning for the November state election.

He said a Liberal Nationals Government would focus on having “more police on the beat, tougher sentencing and $24 million for more local community safety measures, like CCTV cameras in at-risk areas across the Hastings electorate”.

This would include funding a police mobile CCTV camera rollout.

Mr Burgess said grants of up to $250,000 would be made available to “local councils to develop public safety and security infrastructure like CCTV systems, improved lighting and creating local solutions to local crime”.

“Councils will be able to identify areas within their community, such as park edges and shopping areas that attract a higher rate of crime, and implement measures to stop anti-social behaviour,” he said.

“CCTV cameras have a track record of deterring crime and assisting in the quick identification and arrest of criminals.”

Mr Burgess said crime in Hastings had jumped 10.91 per cent and Crib Point “a staggering 55.74 per cent” since the state Labor Party was elected in 2014.

Acting Senior Sergeant Peter Drake, of Hastings police, said CCTV cameras already covered the high-activity parts of High Street, Hastings, but that more would be a positive step. “We’d welcome any initiatives that would lead to having more CCTV coverage in the area. It’s a great investigative tool,” he said.

Other crime prevention measures announced by the Liberal Nationals include establishing police shopfronts in 12 major shopping centres and re-establishing a police-in-schools program to “allow police to better engage with young Victorians”.

Mr Burgess said the parties would commit $2 million over four years to Neighbourhood Watch for local crime prevention initiatives.

First published in the Western Port News – 4 September 2018

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