Police Chief Robert Luna said Tuesday that there is no money in the fiscal 2018 budget to equip the entire department with body cameras.
The statement came in his budget presentation to the City Council. He said a pilot project with body cameras will end in November, and that he would then prepare a report to the council.
That wasn’t good enough for two of the council’s Public Safety Committee. Third District Councilwoman Suzie Price chairs that committee and is a deputy district attorney in Orange County.
“We need to implement cameras in full force soon,” Price said. “It is quickly becoming the standard for police departments… I would like to see us get moving on body-worn cameras soon.”
Luna said again he would wait to get results of the pilot project and would add how other departments are dealing with the issue. He said the Los Angeles Police Department is using body cameras for everyone, but the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department is not using them at this time.
“I will tell you that it is very, very expensive,” Luna said. “It would require a significant commitment from the council. It is not in this year’s budget.”
Eighth District Councilman Al Austin also said he believes the body cameras are something the city must commit to in order to serve Long Beach residents. He added that he wants to see more video security cameras in business districts and other public places.
Fifth District Councilwoman Stacy Mungo, chair of the Budget Oversight Committee, pushed back, saying she wanted a report about all of…
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