The City of Elk Grove plans to expand its police camera surveillance system and upgrade to a real-time information center.

The city’s vice mayor Steve Detrick says Elk Grove is one of the safest cities in the region and he wants to maintain that.

City leaders approved $200,000 to convert a storage room into a police control room that can monitor the city’s 175 cameras in real time.

The Elk Grove Police Department information technology manager, Chris Hill, said the move will help provide information and aid in crime solving.

“After a crime has occurred, being able to find out who was there and when, we can go back and look at those cameras,” Hill said. “If there’s a situation there, then they would be able to firsthand see what’s going on and give those officers a little more information when they arrive.”

Currently the department’s 911 dispatchers have access to those feeds, but emergency calls take priority over that.

A real time crime lab can be especially useful during large events, terrorist attacks and crime solving.

Some critics say adding more cameras to the area is an invasion of privacy, others applaud the city’s use of cameras to fight crime.

Elk Grove City Leaders are also considering adding an additional 300 cameras to cover the city’s main intersections and public spaces.

Modesto, Stockton and Sacramento have similar programs. The City of Sacramento has more than 2,000 cameras.