Philly tax credit sought for businesses installing street-level video cams

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 (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

(AP Photo/Mark Lennihan)

A Philadelphia city councilman wants to offer businesses a tax break for installing surveillance cameras.

Businesses that install the cameras could get up to a $1,000 deduction from their business income and receipts tax bill, under a plan offered by Councilman Kenyatta Johnson.

The catch? Kenyatta Johnson said the cameras would have to focus on a public area.

“Allow individuals who would like to equip their business to purchase them and also get a discount for the surveillance cameras,” he explained. “So it’s a public safety initiative, something I have been focusing on for a period of time and decided to go ahead and introduce.”

Johnson said businesses would have to provide police access to video recordings from the cameras if requested.

“We want to work with the police department to provide real-time surveillance camera opportunities as part of the overall system so that’s how it’s going to work.”

The bill has not had a hearing yet.

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