Legislation Would Reinstate and Expand Number of School Zones Protected by Speed Cameras from 140 to 290 and Expand Area in Which Cameras Can Be Placed
Follows Governor's Emergency Order in August to Temporarily Reinstate and Expand the Program After Senate Republicans Refused to Extend the Life-Saving Law
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced a proposal to formally reinstate the speed camera program in New York City and more than double the number of zones will be included in the 2019 Executive Budget. Speed cameras have proven to be effective at reducing car crashes and increasing survivability rates in school zones, but in 2018 the Republican-led Senate blocked passage of legislation that would allow the program to continue. In response, Governor Cuomo declared a State of Emergency to temporarily reinstate the program. The Governor's new budget proposal would reinstate and expand the program through statute and expand the number of impacted school zones from 140 to 290.
"There is indisputable evidence that speed cameras save lives, and as public servants we must use every available tool to protect our children," Governor Cuomo said. "After Senate Republicans shamefully refused to extend this life-saving program, I declared a State of Emergency before the start of the school year to temporarily keep the cameras operating. With this new proposal we will not only reinstate the program the way it should have been done in the first place - we will also expand the number of cameras to protect more children and prevent needless tragedies and heartbreak."
In addition to expanding the number of school zones covered by the program, the Governor's proposal would also provide additional signage to give notice of cameras as well as expand the area in which cameras can be placed. The number of cameras for each school zone is determined by the City of New York, which operates the program.
In 2013, Governor Cuomo signed a bill into law authorizing the City of New York to develop a system to advance school zone highway safety utilizing camera technology to record and enforce speeding violations. The program was expanded to authorize the deployment of speed cameras in 140 school zones throughout the City of New York the following year.
In 2018, the New York State Senate concluded its legislative session without taking action to extend the speed camera program, thus ending an extremely effective program that demonstratively and successfully protected school children from dangerous drivers. In August, Governor Cuomo declared a State of Emergency to temporarily reinstate the program in order ensure the safety of school children and parents.