City Declines Grant for Security Cameras Without Public Debate


The city of Tucson, Ariz., has rejected a grant from Target Corp. of more than $100,000 to install security cameras throughout the downtown area. The Tucson City Council turned down the grant without publicly discussing the issue, according to the Arizona Daily Star.

Even with increasing merchant complaints about crime and aggressive panhandling hurting businesses, several members of the City Council felt the cameras were an erosion of civil liberties.

Target has since given the money to Fort Worth, Texas, according to Donovan Durband, a member of the Tucson Downtown Partnership.

“Enough City council members thought this was ‘Big Brother,’ so Target took its money to Forth Worth,” Durband said. He also told the told the newspaper the grant given to Fort Worth was actually $250,000, not the $100,000 originally offered.

Durband said he expects a push to be made for the cameras once a new council is seated in December, although paying for them will become an issue as they are likely to cost more than $100,000.

Dana Pack, Tucson regional manager for Target, told the newspaper that Target is continuing to court cities around the country for the program, and Tucson could have another chance for the grant.

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