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SAN BERNARDINO SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS URGE CITY ACTION ON CRIME DOWNTOWN


Here's a link to the article about Viva La Boba:


The San Bernardino City Council met Wednesday to discuss ideas to improve the downtown area. Some local business owners remain skeptical of the city’s plans.

City officials want to work with the police department to install new cameras to deter crime in the area’s business corridors.

Chief Darren Goodman confirmed that 95 percent of the city’s existing cameras don’t work. He says new technology allows police to do real-time surveillance to catch criminals.

Goodman shared that one officer can control up to 15 to 20 cameras at once.

Owners agree that surveillance and police presence could help protect their businesses, but say the city isn’t working with them.

David Friedman owns Viva La Boba, a popular cafe in downtown San Bernardino. He says he’s frustrated.

"Why did no one ask us…the business owners…what we want to see in downtown? We know better than anyone."

City Manager Charles Montoya says the city signed an agreement last week to install new cameras immediately.

Officials also shared plans for renovations of the City Hall building. The city is estimated to pay $75 million in public bonds to improve the structure. They expect to begin construction in the summer.

Correction: An earlier version of this story incorrectly named Benjamin Friedman as the owner of Viva La Boba. The cafe's owner is David Friedman.

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