New York City Council has approved legislation creating a local speed camera programme allowing the City to impose liability on vehicle owners for failure to comply with maximum speed limits in school speed zones.
The decision comes days after Speaker Corey Johnson and the Council reached a deal with Governor Andrew Cuomo and Mayor Bill de Blasio to reactivate speed cameras surrounding city schools after the State Senate failed to take action this summer.
The legislation establishes a speed camera programme to detect vehicles exceeding the speed limit in school speed zones. The programme does not have a cap on the number of cameras that could be operated and allows the City flexibility in hours of operation to address safety concerns near schools. Vehicle owners will be liable for an operator of that vehicle exceeding the speed limit by more than 10 miles per hour in a school speed zone. Such vehicle owners would be liable for a $50 penalty.
“School starts next week. The time for playing politics is over. I promised that we would do everything in our power to make sure kids were safe on the first day of school, and I am proud that we were able to make this happen today. I would like to thank the Governor and the Mayor for working with us on this life-saving legislation. Together we have made our streets safer in the name of 1.1 million school children,” said Speaker Corey Johnson.
“Safety has been one of my top priorities as Chair of the Transportation Committee. We have passed dozens of bills focusing on traffic safety and with the support of the Speaker we have continued that critical work today. [The bill] will create a local speed camera program that will maintain what has worked and will improve on the existing one. Better enforcement and better street design saves lives. We CAN make a difference,” said Council Member Ydanis Rodriguez.