Bakersfield City Council approves funding for officer body cameras, homeless shelter costs, new fire engines

Local News

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — The Bakersfield City Council unanimously voted to fund a program bringing body cameras for all city police officers, and for nearly $1 million to support county and city homeless shelter projects.

Wednesday’s vote was part of mid-year appropriation items taken on by the council. The city said it allows city staff to make adjustments and recommendations on the previously approved 2019-2020 budget.

The city voted to use $737,000 of Measure N funds to complete the Bakersfield Police Department’s project of getting 215 more cameras, outfitting all officers by spring 2020.

In September, Axon Enterprise Inc. and the city worked to get 210 cameras cameras for the first phase of the project. The funds will also go toward hiring two new positions at the department.

The city will also use $822,000 for homeless shelter projects. The bulk of the money — $500,000 — will help pay for expenses at the county’s low barrier shelter at 2900 M St. The remaining money would go to support the city’s shelter project at 1900 E. Brundage Lane.

The fire department will also receive $322,000 to help pay for two new engines and to fund six new engineers and six firefighters to serve as rescue squads and backup for other fire stations.

The council’s mid-year approval allows for the fire department to have the engines and staff in place by the beginning of the next fiscal year.

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