Introduces Legislation to Replace Controversial School-Zone Cameras with Non-Punitive Measures Near Schools to Keep Children Safe
University District Council Member Rasheed Wyatt (pictured above) has heard more than his share of complaints from constituents about the city’s poorly implemented School-Zone Safety Program. One of the most recent involved a cancer patient who had to use funds from her stimulus check to pay fines for breaking the 15 mile per hour limit.
“It a messed up program” he lamented. And the young lawmaker hopes that his recently introduced legislation will fix it.
Other council members he shared, are also getting complaints.
“This is the 3rd poorest city in the country and we’re giving out speed tickets like candy,” he said. “A $50 ticket can bankrupt a family already struggling, and most of us are dealing with poor people in our district.”
Wyatt ‘s resolution calls the camera program “a failure” and wants the council to rescind the 2019 approval of the contract for the program.
“Our focus is definitely on children’s safety,” he continued. “We never thought about it as something to raise money for the city.”
His three-page proposal calls for replacing the cameras with speed bumps and “SCHOOL” pavement markings in school zones and completely marked crosswalks in areas found to be unsafe. He also wants the speed limit to change from 15 mph to 20 mph He made reference to a current lawsuit calling for the same because of the potentially dangerous condition the current 15mph limit creates.
The School Zone Safety program he concluded, was poorly implementd from the start -from disproportionate placement of the cameras in high poverty communities to poor signage and over extended speed zone hours.
“People were just going into traps…I would have never thought in 100 years that this thing would have been done so backwards.”
The proposal will come up at Tuesday’s council meeting where it will be sent to the Legislative Committee he said, because it involves changing an ordinance.
We have to look closely at how we legislate to make sure that the least of us is taken care of… It’s a must!” he concluded.