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Daley: By 2016, cameras on 'almost every block'

FRAN SPIELMAN / Chicago Sun Times | October 12 2006

Security and terrorism won't be an issue if Chicago wins the right to host the 2016 Summer Olympic Games because, by that time, there'll be a surveillance camera on every corner, Mayor Daley said Wednesday.

"By the time 2016 [rolls around], we'll have more cameras than Washington, D.C. ... Our technology is more advanced than any other city in the world -- even compared to London -- dealing with our cameras and the sophistication of cameras and retro-fitting all the cameras downtown in new buildings, doing the CTA cameras," Daley said.

"By 2016, I'll make you a bet. We'll have [cameras on] almost every block."

The mayor talked about the steady march toward a Big Brother city during a free-wheeling exchange with the Sun-Times editorial board after unveiling his proposed 2007 budget.

On development of a CTA superstation at Block 37 that offers premium service to O'Hare and Midway Airports, Daley appeared to side with CTA Board Chairwoman Carole Brown over CTA President Frank Kruesi.

He said it makes no sense to charge premium prices for airport service unless the CTA can find a way to reduce travel times -- by allowing airport-only trains to bypass regular Blue and Orange Line trains.

"They have to cut certain stations out where no one gets on or off. ... You have to cut the [travel] time down to 35 minutes," Daley said.

The mayor also put in yet another plug for privatization of state assets -- and government ownership of Illinois' nine riverboat casinos.

Under Daley's plan, private companies would run the casinos in exchange for a management fee that amounts to roughly 10 percent of the profits. The rest would go into a fund for education.

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