Future of Federal Funding for Police Body Cams Still Unclear


Two similar Democratic proposals to equip more police officers with body-worn cameras should come into better focus within days, as details emerge on a White House initiative as well as a prominent African-American lawmaker's legislation in the House, reports Roll Call. But GOP lawmakers with authority on the issue on both sides of Capitol Hill are so far tight-lipped. Calls to expand the use of the cameras have gained traction since the controversial August 2014 police shooting of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Mo.

President Obama asked Congress in December for $75 million in grant money to help law enforcement agencies buy more cameras, and that is expected to be part of the White House budget proposal for fiscal 2016. The White House wants an additional $55 million to research the use of body cameras. The cameras, supporters say, help boost transparency in officer interactions with the public. But their increasing use also raises questions about privacy and officer discretion.

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