SUGAR LAND, TX - What could you do with a $1.6 million budget? That depends on what you're buying and who's spending.
The city of Sugar Land has made its crime prevention camera program operational; a $1.6 million project for license plate recognition.
Sugar Land resident Chloe Corrigan feels, "there's no reason we should spend $1.6 million for one city whose crime rate is already the lowest out of the surrounding areas."
Sugar Land police says this will help identify, arrest, and convict criminals.
"We have some crimes in a particular area such as burglaries and robberies that have happened in the past. We believe this is going to be a tool that's going to be utilized to help solve those type of cases," said Sugar Land Assistance Police Chief, Eric Robins.
Cops will be able to search a database of vehicles from past crimes and its license plate number.
Seems very Big Brother-ish, but Sugar Land PD says license plate records will stay on file no more than 30 days, except when used as evidence.
Is the answer to fighting crime, more cameras on the streets or cops on the beat?
"I think the money should have been spent on training," said resident Savannah Massey.
David Alvarez said, "it already feels like a safe location. To spend $1.6 million on license plate cameras seems a bit excessive."
The new cameras are in 27 locations across the city, mostly north of highway 90A. This isn't the first time the city's used license plate recognition cameras.
Reportedly, the Sugar Land PD has used these eagle eye type cameras for about six years at three locations in Town Square and the First Colony Mall area.
More on Sugar Land's crime prevention cameras can be found here.