MAROONDAH Council says the long-awaited CCTV cameras at Ringwood railway station should be installed by June — almost a year later than promised.
Not only is the project behind schedule but it appears the key stakeholders have different reasons as to why the project has stalled.
In statements to the Weekly, the council said the delays were due to new testing requirements for CCTV cameras, but last week these claims were proven false.
Maroondah director of city development Phil Turner initially stated the delay was out of the council's hands.
Mr Turner's statement read: "Since the project commenced, new requirements for testing and approval of CCTV cameras were introduced. This has been a lengthy, but essential, requirement of the project which must be carried out by all authorities seeking to install CCTV cameras."
But when the Weekly contacted energy company SP AusNet — one of the key stakeholders the council has worked closely with to install the cameras — a spokesman said this was simply not true.
He said the delays were mostly because the majority of electricity poles that the cameras would be installed on were owned by VicRoads rather than SP AusNet, which has made it harder to "find a technical solution for".
When questioned again, the council issued a second statement: "Since the project commenced council has been working closely with SP AusNet to meet its requirements relating to the installation of CCTV cameras on its infrastructure."
The long-promised cameras have, along with the introduction of protective service officers in September last year, been touted as one of the key steps to making locals feel safer around the station.
Ringwood police station will receive a direct feed from the cameras with the aim of reducing the incidence of violence and anti-social behaviour and improving the perception of safety in Ringwood. Mr Turner said the council was currently advertising for tenders, with the successful tender expected to be announced in mid-April.
"Once a tender has been awarded, works will commence to install and activate the camera network. This process is anticipated to take about eight weeks."
The council's website shows tenders opened on Saturday and will close on March 15.
The government pledged $200,000 to the project under the Safer Suburbs scheme, with the installation due to be completed by July last year.