THE first election funding commitment for Kiama came in the form of CCTV cameras, when opposition state spokeswoman Bronwyn Bishop visited last Wednesday.
Meeting Kiama Newspower newsagency owners Bruce and Shirley Johnston with Liberal candidate for Gilmore Ann Sudmalis, Ms Bishop announced $150,000, to be given to Kiama Municipal Council provided the Coalition was elected.
"The cameras act as a deterrent, but they also act with good follow-up, so if someone does perpetrate, they get caught and in turn, that is a deterrent because people know they'll get caught," Ms Bishop said.
Ms Sudmalis said people had to vote for her to receive the funding.
"By and large, this has been initiated largely by the businesses here in Kiama because you've had hold-ups here, you've had vandalism near the taxi rank and you've had potential robberies near the taxi rank," she said.
Mr Johnston welcomed the news, saying vandalism to posters outside his store was a regular occurrence.
He also said the CCTV footage inside his shop had been used to identify a young boy who wanted to buy a cigarette lighter, but had knocked over a display in protest after staff requested identification.
The council had already sought $50,000 in funding from the state government to fund 13 cameras in Terralong Street.
The council has set aside $80,000 in this year's budget to cover the rest of the cost.
While Community Safety Committee chairman and councillor Dennis Seage said the additional funding from the Coalition would comfortably fund rollouts in the municipality's other commercial centres, Kiama Mayor Brian Petschler said maintenance costs would also have to be considered.
"It'll depend, of course, on the election as to whether the money comes through," he said.
"Assuming it comes through, we'll re-evaluate the upgrading of a number of other areas, which is good news.
"But it certainly will allow us to expand the program much quicker."
Member for Gilmore Joanna Gash first secured funds for CCTV cameras in 2005.
However, councillors were not in favour of the technology at the time.