The Time Is Now to Speak Up for Speed Cameras in NYC [Updated]

If you were waiting for the right moment to hit the phones in support of speed cameras, now would be good.

Speeding is the leading cause of New York City traffic deaths. Photo: ##http://www.streetsblog.org/2013/02/25/curb-jumping-drivers-kill-women-in-manhattan-and-brooklyn-no-charges/##New York Post##

As of this morning, the Assembly bill that would authorize a pilot program for a limited number of speed enforcement cameras near NYC schools was in the Ways and Means Committee, chaired by Upper Manhattan rep Denny Farrell. We have word that the Senate bill is being held up by Long Island Senator Charles Fuschillo.

Fuschillo, who chairs the Transportation Committee, has a pretty solid record on traffic safety. He has backed red light cameras and tougher penalties for distracted driving, and was instrumental in the passage of New York’s complete streets law. Our source says Fuschillo doesn’t want speed cameras on Long Island, but since the bill only applies to New York City, that would make his opposition to it especially perplexing. We put in a call to Fuschillo’s press officer a few hours ago and will post an update if we hear back.

Today is the last day of the legislative session, and NYC is closer than it’s ever been to adding speed cameras to its traffic enforcement toolkit. If you haven’t yet reached out to your Senate and Assembly representatives, now is the time.

Remind them that speeding is the number one cause of traffic deaths in NYC, speeding near schools is rampant, and motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of injury-related death for children. Speed cameras are proven to reduce traffic deaths and injuries, and the proposed NYC pilot program is backed by every relevant sector of city government, including the mayor’s office, NYPD, the City Council, NYC DOT, and the Department of Health.

If you don’t know whom to call, you can look up your reps by entering your address on the Senate and Assembly web sites.

Update: We heard back from Fuschillo’s spokesperson, who said: “The bill is still under consideration by the committee.” He would not say whether or not Fuschillo opposes speed cameras for New York City.

  • http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?bn=A04327&term=2013

    Here is a link to the bill. I assume MLTSPNSR means some kind of supporter? I don’t know how this works. But, Arroyo’s name is there! Yay!

    I called to say thanks.

    When you call they want the bill number. It’s A04327.

    Also, the local office might not know what’s going on, try to call Albany.

  • Brad Aaron

    Added links to each bill.

    Thanks.

  • Ben Kintisch

    Just called both offices. Every streetsblog reader, please take two minutes to call. Please!

  • Ian Dutton

    Just called. The Senate bill number is S04459. The bill numbers should be included in every “call your reps” post, Brad!

  • Daphna

    I called Senator Perkins. His Albany office is not answering. His local office has no idea about this bill (S04459) on the agenda, and has not even heard of speed cameras or the concept of speed cameras. (This is the same state senator who recently fought off Select Bus Service in his district while everywhere else clamors for it.)

    I called Assemblyman O’Donnell. He has people answering at both NYC and Albany offices who are aware of this bill (A04327).

  • Reinvent Albany

    You can follow the progress of the bill in both houses on the State Senate’s Open Legislation site. http://open.nysenate.gov/legislation/bill/S4459A-2013

  • Daphna

    Thanks for the link. Klein, Dilan, Espaillat, Peralta and Squadron have their names on the senate version. Wish more did!
    That is an extremely long, very wordy bill. Wow. Is there no way for them to outline what they want to do more succinctly?

  • G

    Just called NY Senator Velmanette Montgomery and Assemblymember Walter Mosely’s district offices. Staffers at both offices knew the bill, noted my name, and did not request the bill number.

  • Daphna

    Does that update mean that this bill is still in committee and not on the agenda for a vote by the whole assembly and senate today? Does this mean more delay? Speed cameras should not be controversial. Being against them means sanctioning the illegal behavior of driving above the maximum allowed speed.

  • lizbeeee

    Why so eager to give the government another opportunity to take money from already overworked people Daphna? This bill should not even be considered in a supposedly free country because it takes away from a small part of citizens lives and civil liberties. When does the government stop trying to “help” us by treating us like babies and watching us on a constant basis, next thing you know well have chips installed in our bodies. There is a line and it is being crossed again and again by the people who are supposed to defend our rights. Im going to assume you never read Orwell’s 1984 but our existence is beginning to look more and more like it every year. The fact of the matter is that unfortunate things happen all the time and speed cameras are not going to stop them from happening. So No opposing speed cameras does not mean sanctioning speeding it means opposing abuse of power.

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