The Tánaiste and Minister for Justice and Equality, Frances Fitzgerald TD, has announced a new grant-aid scheme to assist community groups with the establishment of community-based CCTV systems.
These systems could greatly benefit rural areas in Offaly which are at risk from criminals who in many cases are not from the area and who use the motorway network to get to more isolated and vulnerable areas.
Under the scheme, eligible community groups can apply for grant-aid of up to 60% of the total capital cost of a proposed CCTV system, up to a maximum grant of €40,000. Upon approval of the grant, the applicant will receive an up-front payment of 50% of the grant with the balance to be paid when the system is fully operational.
Some of the key objectives of the Scheme are to enhance existing policing provision within the community, to assist in the prevention and reduction of local crime, disorder and anti-social activity and to increase community involvement in the provision of legitimate, integrated responses to prevent and reduce crime in local areas in association with appropriate agencies.
The Tánaiste said “I am delighted to announce this scheme, which delivers on the Programme for Government commitment to provide investment in CCTV systems. The commitment is also included in the Action Plan on Rural Development.”
She added “I am very conscious of the value that communities, especially rural communities, place on CCTV as a means of deterring crime and assisting in the detection of offenders. In addition, it serves to reduce the fear of crime. With this in mind, I secured €1 million in Budget 2017 to support qualifying community groups who wish to establish CCTV systems in their areas and I would now encourage them to avail of the scheme”.
It is intended that the scheme will run for three years with funding of €1 million being made available each year.
The scheme aims to build on the previous Department-funded community-based CCTV scheme which was launched in 2005 and which funded the establishment of some 45 Community CCTV systems. The last of that funding was paid out in July 2013.
Applications under the scheme can be made to the Department of Justice and Equality and the application form and explanatory material are available for download on the website of the Department at www.justice.ie.