Flint has been awarded $250,000 to install surveillance cameras by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The money is part of a grant that is supposed to help increase safety in high crime areas. The Capital Fund Emergency Safety and Security Grant was only awarded to two cities. Saginaw is the other city that will be receiving money.

The money will be spent on surveillance cameras at two Flint housing developments within the next six months. The two complexes are the River Park Apartments on Carpenter Rd and the Howard Estates developments on Lapeer near 12th.

Once the cameras are installed, they will be monitored by Flint Police at all times. Mayor Weaver commented that this is in line with the long-term goals of making Flint a safer place.

A quarter of a million dollars is a lot of money. When that kind of money is focused on one project it usually makes an immediate difference, but I don't know if I agree with that here.

Installing cameras to catch criminals on video is fundamentally different than investing in a community to prevent crime all together right?

I agree that cameras will definitely be a deterrent to criminals, but it's only a matter of time before deterrents stop working.

I can't be too critical here because I'm obviously not offering up any better suggestions. I just hope that we don't spend too much time on catching criminals after they become criminals, instead of trying to help them before they make that decision.