Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis (R,C,I,Ref – Brooklyn, Staten Island) is voicing her opposition to the proposed expansion of the NYC Department of Transportation (DOT) speed camera program. Under existing law, the city has the authority to operate 140 speed cameras at specific locations during certain periods of time. Yesterday, Mayor Bill de Blasio and DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg announced their intent to seek state permission to expand the program to include more cameras in more locations despite recent reports that the city has been issuing defective notices of violation since the program’s inception.
“The city’s camera programs, from speed cameras to red light cameras to bus lane cameras, have been fraught with problems since they were activated. By calling for an expansion of the program just days after reports that violations were being issued improperly, it makes you question the city’s motives. Are they really concerned about public safety or do they just want more money?” said Malliotakis. “If it was really about pedestrian safety, the city would add stop signs at school corners, install sidewalks where none exist, clean the snow at bus stops so people don’t have to wait in the street, crack down on individuals driving with suspended licenses, and stop denying federal detainer requests for drunk drivers.”
Section 1180-b (d) of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law requires that a notice of violation delivered to the offender must be accompanied by a certificate, signed by a city technician, affirming that the evidence contained therein is accurate. It has been reported that notices of violation issued by the NYC Department of Finance have never contained the requisite certificates.
“I also fear that this overreliance on cameras will be used as an excuse to stymie expansion of our police force. With our community facing an unprecedented drug epidemic, we must acknowledge that a camera cannot detect when a person is driving under the influence, but a police officer can,” Malliotakis added.