Council Member Wyatt Fights to Fix a “Messed Up Program”

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.