FLOWERY BRANCH - Flowery Branch Police are getting state of the art technology to allow them to identify and catch criminals by scanning their vehicle tags.
City Council approved buying a license plate reader during Thursday night's final meeting of the year. They voted to spend up to $20,000 for the equipment, to be assigned to a single patrol car according to Police Chief David Spillers.
"They're used often in a mobile application and stationary applications as well," the Chief said. "You could park on the side of the Interstate and let traffic go by or you could be on routine patrol, driving through subdivisions or along secondary streets and get the same information. We are a patrol service oriented department and that would be my intent, to use it in conjunction with patrol."
The Chief added the readers can scan license tags at an amazing speed.
"If I understand what I was told correctly, it can do that at a rate of about 800 per second," Spillers said, but the department won't be storing innocent people's tag information. Hopefully the tag readers will serve as a crime deterrent but Spillers plans to use it fairly.
"You don't want to write somebody a ticket whose tag expired yesterday," the Chief said. "That's not reasonable. What we're looking for is the cancelled or suspended registration and the wanted misdemeanors and the wanted felons."
UPDATING THE FY 2013 BUDGET
Finance Director Jeremy Perry told City Council they may expect $187,000 in revenues over expenses for Fiscal Year 2013 in their upcoming auditor's report in January. Council approved an end of the year budget amendment to reflect some additional expenditures and revenues.
"We have to have the governing authority increase the budget, "Perry explained. "It's just increasing certain line items to offset expenses we have. There's no change to our overall budget."
Expenditures and revenue increases in the amendment occurred after the budget was set July 30th and Perry said the amendment just brings the budget up to date.