2018-06-20 / Front Page

Advocates Call on State Senate To Expand School Zone Speed Camera Program

State Senator Jose Peralta, Senate Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, state senators and advocates urged the State Legislature on June 12 to pass Peralta’s bill (S.6046-C) that will expand and extend the New York City school zone speed camera program. The proposal will add 150 monitoring devices to the current 140 speed safety cameras operating under a pilot program approved in 2013. The program is set to expire next month unless the legislature acts within the next five session days scheduled.  

The legislation will allow 290 speed cameras to operate within a quarter mile from a designated school, beginning one hour and running until one hour after a school day. Devices will also be operational during student activities and up to 30 minutes before and 30 minutes after the activities. Additionally, Peralta’s proposal calls for the installation of warning signs within 300 feet of a monitoring device, and prohibits the installation of a camera within 300 feet of a highway exit ramp.

On June 7, the New York City Council approved the home rule request required for the State Legislature to pass the bill. Peralta hopes his legislation is debated and voted on before session ends. Currently, the bill has 33 co-sponsors, more than enough required for the Senate to pass the bill. Supporting the bill are all 31 members of the State Democratic Conference, along with two Republicans, Patty Ritchie and Marty Golden.

The school zone speed camera has been tremendously successful. At locations with cameras, speeding violations declined on an average of more than 60 percent, pedestrian injuries decreased 23 percent, and the vast majority of drivers ticketed (81 percent) did not receive a second violation.

“This is about protecting children. Who does not want to protect children? Who does not want to save lives? We need to ensure streets are safe when New York City schoolchildren travel to and from school every day. My bill will make city streets safer for kids. If we do not act, the cameras will go away in July and our kids will return to unsafe streets when they go back to school in September. I would like to thank Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins, all the co-sponsors of my legislation, and all the advocates for their tireless work to keep our streets safe,” said Senator Peralta. 

Senate Democratic Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins said, “Speed cameras save lives. There are too many tragic headlines and preventable fatalities, and that is why we need more cameras to protect children, and all New Yorkers, from accidents. I commend Senator Jose Peralta and Assembly Member Deborah Glick for sponsoring this legislation, and I urge the Senate Republicans to finally bring this good bill for a vote. This is about protecting children, and it deserves a vote in the State Senate immediately.”





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