Efforts to secure future of CCTV cameras in Sleaford
COUNCILLORS are working to save the future of CCTV cameras in Sleaford's town centre.
The funding for cameras and seven-night-a-week security patrols was due to be taken on by Sleaford's Business Improvement District (BID).
But the business group ceased operation on Friday, September 28, following a failed renewal ballot earlier this year.
Just over half of the 660 levy-paying members in Sleaford took part in a ballot to renew BID for another five years, with 187 voting against the continuation and 164 for.
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Now North Kesteven District Council and Sleaford Town Council are working to secure more funding and ensure the survival of the cameras.
Alan Thomas, deputy chief executive at NKDC, said: "NKDC is very disappointed that local businesses voted against keeping the Sleaford BID.
"The district council has worked with the BID on a number of key projects over the years, including the Sleaford Masterplan. The council will now have to look at how we can carry on some of the good work the BID has done.
"As the Sleaford BID, Sleaford Town Council and NKDC managed and maintained CCTV in Sleaford, we will be looking at ways to fund the shortfall and continue to run CCTV in the town with Sleaford Town Council as the BID's contribution will cease in March 2013."
Sleaford BID was set up in 2007 with an aim to improve and promote the town and also contribute to the CCTV running costs.
The BID also funded the nightly patrols, Pubwatch, Shopwatch and transport initiatives for the town. The group needed 50 per cent of its levy payers to vote for it to continue and was disappointed with the news that only 46 per cent had voted in its favour.
The rateable value of "yes" votes was £2,471,311 with "no" totalling £3,531,775.
John Elkington, former chairman of the BID, said he hoped someone else would take on the responsibility.
He said: "I'm in favour of anyone taking the cameras on and I don't want to see them disappear from the town.
"But Sleaford BID doesn't exist anymore and that's a source of income which has been lost.
"We would have made a contribution to the cameras, which is now not going to happen because we've been voted out. Anything we would have done is simply not going to happen."