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June 2020
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17 cameras in Nelson help deter vandals, drug sales

By Ralph O. Dennis

Contributing writer

 

Do the surveillance cameras really work? Operationally, yes, they do. They all are operational. As far as capturing the events in their view, they are doing that also. Since the first cameras were installed there have been arrests made using the video. Lt. David Simmons, Cherokee Sheriff’s Office, told the Progress that two arrests were a result of the work of the cameras. 

One camera at the park captured the vandalism at the restroom building, resulting in the apprehension of two juveniles. The cameras were originally purchased to help protect the city’s property. Their use has expanded since then.

The city has 16 operational cameras at various locations in the city. In some areas the cameras have curtailed “after hours” activities. Mayor Sylvia Green said Nelson has a drug problem and sales are being made right there and people are coming from all over the surrounding areas to make the purchases. She is hoping that the cameras can give law enforcement the necessary information to help rid the city of the drug problem.

At the March 2 meeting the council set aside the request for funds to upgrade the computer system. The current program is good for up to 16 cameras and the city has 17. This means that one camera is not being utilized as it should be. If they upgrade the system to a 32-camera program it would give them all the video storage they would need for a long time. It would also allow them to expand the number of cameras as they become needed.

The cost to upgrade the system is estimated to be $999.84. The council decided to hold on this matter until the next meeting when firm pricing could be presented.

In other business

The council voted to remove all the temporary speed bumps in the city.

The council discussed the needed repairs to the nature trail- waiting on better pricing.

A list of needed street signs was presented, and the clerk was asked to look for other sources and prices.