The Obama administration recently announced a plan to give $263 million to local law enforcement, which is somewhat concerning considering how this intrusion of the federal government may affect local governments. There may be a silver lining in this plan as $75 million will go to providing officers with body cameras. This is interesting to say the least as many people have been calling for this move to make the police more accountable. Yet while body cameras may prove to be a good tool to keep the police accountable, what the rest of this money will go to is not quite clear.
Immediately you’d see that amount, $75 million, and think that it’s a lot of money being allocated for body cameras. In reality, that money will only go to fund 50,000 body cams, which translates to about $1500 per camera. A quick Google search finds that even the most expensive law enforcement grade cameras are only about $700. This begs the question, where is the rest of this money going? Perhaps I am missing out on some of the nuances of body cameras (I doubt I’m missing out on $800 worth of them) or perhaps, as one Tumblr user joked, “the rest of the money will go to the guy paid to erase the footage.”