Speeding Enforcement Not a Top Priority in Buffalo

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Photo Source: Flickr

Photo Source: Flickr

Speeding tickets are known both in New York and nationally as a method of safety enforcement, but also as an effective way to raise revenue. New York was recently ranked as the third worst state for speeding tickets.  However, a surprising new report shows that for the Buffalo Police Department, speeding enforcement might not be one of the departments top priorities.

The Buffalo traffic division consists of only 17 of the roughly 800 police officers on the force and the first priority for the officers is traffic control at large events, with enforcement as a secondary priority. According to the Institute for Traffic Safety Management and Research,  Buffalo police issued only about 200 speeding tickets in 2013. By comparison, the towns of Tonawanda and Amherst in Erie County, NY issued approximately 3,500 and 3,970 speeding tickets, respectively, in the same year.

Council President Darius Pridgen says the reason for this discrepancy is a higher call volume involving crime in Buffalo, “When you look at these numbers, you\’re comparing them to an Amherst or Williamsville, you\’re not comparing apples to apples. What the needs are and what we need our police force for, compared to probably a suburb, is totally different,” Pridgen said.

However, the number of speeding tickets issued could soon increase. Recently, Buffalo has established its own traffic violations bureau, where traffic tickets can be pled down. The fines are now sent to the city instead of the state, which may create incentive to issue more speeding citations.

Council President Pridgen insisted, “I wouldn\’t want to see this become a money grab and all of a sudden we start setting up speed traps in order to just get more money in the city coffers.” Yet, an increase in speeding citations and revenue might be inevitable as the city is projecting an additional 2 million dollars in revenue from the new plea bargain structure.

If you have received a ticket for speeding, call our dedicated staff of attorneys for a free and confidential consultation at 888-434-0406.

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This post was written by Adam Rosenblum

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