Not camera shy: Gov will sign bill passed by Legislature authorizing hundreds more speed cameras on city streets

Camera man: Gov. Cuomo will sign into law a bill that will more than quintuple the amount of the city’s school zone-speed cameras, he announced at a press conference on Tuesday shortly after the Legislature passed the bill in both houses.
Brooklyn Paper
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As many as 750 speed cameras will soon monitor drivers in city school zones, according to Gov. Cuomo, who on Tuesday said he will sign a bill authorizing a massive expansion of the cameras, and the hours they operate, after the state Senate and Assembly each passed versions of the legislation.

“I support the speed cameras. I’ll sign it,” Cuomo said at a press conference following each chamber’s vote.

The lower chamber passed Manhattan Assemblywoman Deborah Glick’s version of the bill before sending it off to the state Senate, whose members passed corresponding legislation introduced by state Sen. Andrew Gounardes (D–Bay Ridge) by a vote of 43-18.

The Legislature’s approval of the bills came days after Council on March 13 formally requested that state pols vote in favor of the legislation that only affects the city, passing a so-called Home Rule Request by a vote of 44–3.

The bill now awaiting Cuomo’s signature authorizes the addition of up to 610 cameras — which automatically photograph the license plates of cars driving thirty miles-per hour or more in school zones, and send those vehicles’ registered owners $50 tickets — across the city’s 2,300 school zones. The legislation also:

• Lengthens the hours the cameras are on, extending their current operating times from an hour before and after school is in session to between 6 am and 10 pm on weekdays.

• Broadens the areas where the cameras operate, allowing officials to install them within a quarter-mile radius of schools, not just within a quarter-mile stretch of the same street a given school is on as current law allows.

• Requires the city to hang signs in school zones with speed cameras that warn drivers of the technology’s presence.

• Mandates local officials prioritize placing the cameras in school zones with higher rates of speeding and crashes.

• Requires the city to submit annual reports to the governor and leadership of both chambers of the Legislature with data including the total amount of ticket revenue that local officials spent on traffic and pedestrian safety measures, as well as “the effectiveness and adequacy of the [expanded] hours of operation.”

Gounardes cheered the passage of the expanded bill, which he said would help make streets safer in Brooklyn and all boroughs.

“No parent, senior, or pedestrian of any age should live in fear of crossing the street because of speeding traffic,” he said. “This program slows traffic and saves lives.”

Data shows that the already in place speed cameras work. In the two years after officials first installed them in 2014, there were 60-percent fewer daily violations in school zones with speed cameras, according to a 2018 report published by the Department of Transportation. And the majority of Gounardes’ constituents support adding more cameras, according to a 2018 poll commissioned by street-safety group Transportation Alternatives.

The state’s move to massively increase the cameras and their operating hours comes roughly eight months after all of them temporarily shut off last July, after state Sen. Simcha Felder (D–Midwood) blocked legislation preserving and expanding the program from leaving the Cities Committee, which he chaired at the time, for a floor vote in the upper chamber before it dispersed in June.

Council then stepped in to broker an emergency deal between Mayor DeBlasio and Gov. Cuomo, who ultimately signed an executive order to turn the tech back on before school started in September, and this year included a proposal in his executive budget that would reinstate the speed-camera program without the need for an executive order, and up the number of cameras, but only to 290.

DeBlasio and Council Speaker Corey Johnson (D–Manhattan) applauded the Legislature’s vote to expand the speed-camera program, which Hizzoner called a “huge victory for safe streets.”

The legislation will become law 30 days after Cuomo signs it, and would be valid through June 30, 2022. A spokesman for the governor could not provide a specific date for when Cuomo will sign the legislation, but confirmed that he plans to.

Reach reporter Julianne McShane at (718) 260–2523 or by e-mail at Follow her on Twitter @juliannemcshane.
Updated 1:48 pm, March 20, 2019
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Reasonable discourse

Mike from Williamsburg says:
I hope no one gets speeding tickets. I hope drivers obey the rules and drive safely. It would be a welcome change.
March 19, 2019, 7:47 pm
Jim from Cobble Hill says:
Drivers in NYC are a way too entitled bunch. I hope first offense means suspended license. That's the only way drivers will learn.
March 19, 2019, 9:23 pm
Charles from Bklyn says:
Only a naive fool believes these cameras are for safety. It's all about the added revenue. When was the last time you saw the police pull over a red light driver? Those who support cameras are sheep.
March 19, 2019, 10:21 pm
Frank from Furter says:
These tickets are against the car only. Like parking tickets. 50 fine. Since the cameras just catch the license plates and not the actual driver no suspensions yet. The city wants if the car gets a certain number in some period to require training and possibly a suspension of the car registration.
March 19, 2019, 10:22 pm
Jim from Cobble Hill says:
Making money off the backs of people who drive illegally...? Sounds good to me. Maybe in the future they'll try to avoid that by (gasp) driving safely. And the last time I saw the NYPD stop someone for traffic issues was 2 weeks ago. Driver failed to stop or even slow down at the 4 way stop sign intersection of Hoyt St and 3rd St. They pulled him over and wrote more than one citation for his stupid a$$.
March 20, 2019, 8:11 am
Michael says:
A complete invasion of privacy. When did we decide to allow ourselves to be watched by the government like this? I'd like to be able to do things without being filmed.
March 20, 2019, 9:08 am
John from Bay Ridge says:
This is a good start. Now let’s see the City add 2,000 ref light and stop sign cameras.
March 20, 2019, 9:23 am
Susan Rosenfeld from Sheepshead Bay says:
Michael, Are you aware how many children have been injured and killed by speeding cars near schools all over Brooklyn? There's no problem and no "invasion of privacy" if you drive safely. Kids walking with their parent holding their parent's hand in the crosswalk with the green light have been hit by speeding cars. This is a tragedy right here in Brooklyn.
March 20, 2019, 9:25 am
Voting for Trump from Windsor Terrace says:
Its all about money. If it was about safety, cops would be enforcing laws against illegal u-turns, not signaling when turning, phone & texting while driving, etc. Then again, DeBlasio is turning NYC into another Seattle by telling cops not to ticket pot smokers, allowing bums to sleep on the trains, taking up needed seats during rush hours while stinking up the trains. Who wants to be sitting on the subway and have a Park Sloper who just finished smoking his morning weed and smells of skunk grabbing the seat next to you? With Cuomo, its all about following Ocasio-Cortez by declaring war on all plastic. If Cuomo has his dictatorship way, we all will soon lose our plastic shopping bags and be forced to go back to the days of the the paper bags which will use more fossil fuel and take down our trees but will make Ocasio-Cortez happy as she is the new boss of all Democrats. Plastic bags are the best but common sense doesn't matter to Boss Ocasio-Cortez or to other leaders in New York as they are afraid to stand up to her.
March 20, 2019, 9:27 am
Susan Rosenfeld from Sheepshead Bay says:
Charles, I saw a police car stop a car going through a red light on Coney Island Avenue and Avenue Y this past Sunday. The revenue from these speeding tickets will be going to help pay the medical bills of those hurt by speeders.
March 20, 2019, 9:28 am
Police State from NYC says:
Sounds like the beginning of Nazi control of Germany. Fear thy government! Be very afraid
March 20, 2019, 9:33 am
Mike from Williamsburg says:
Looking at the cops' unwillingness to do their job and concluding that these cameras are all about money is wrong. It's much more a reflection of the failure of the NYPD. Cameras can't be lazy or extend "courtesy" to their crime families. The cops are some of the worst drivers on the road. That's why we need cameras.
March 20, 2019, 9:34 am
Voting for Trump from Windsor Terrace says:
Susan - If you think that revenue from these tickets are going to pay medical bills of those hit by cars, what have you been smoking with your coffee? The money will be going to fund one of DeBlasio wasted project headed by corrupt friends of his wife. Which is why I am voting for Trump next year. The Democrats led by Ocasio-Cortez, along with Cuomo, DeBlasio, Al Gore, Bernie Sanders, etc., dictate that we must follow their plan to save the environment while they fly in private plans, avoid public transit, ride or drive in fuel guzzling SUV cars, shop with plastic bags, use plastic utensils, have higher than average electric bills, eat read meat, etc.
March 20, 2019, 9:36 am
Frank from Furter says:
why is ok to have a cop handing out tickets at every corner but not a camera taking pictures on public streets? Its not in your home or even in the car itself. BTW each month the NYPD issues almost 100,000 traffic moving citations city wide. A red light/speed ticket from a cop will cost you at least $200-500 plus points. A red light/speed camera ticket cost $50 and no points. Yes it makes money but not hundreds of millions. In 4 years they netted $83 million slightly over $20mill per year..not chump change but not exactly paying the national debt either. The City subsidizes the Health and hospital corporation to the tune of $1Billion per year. and revenue has been decreasing as people slow in the areas of the cameras...
March 20, 2019, 10:09 am
Sid from Boerum Hill says:
The city makes over $500 million per year in parking tickets...
March 20, 2019, 10:16 am
Sid from Boerum Hill says:
I am reliably told that Trump supports red light cameras. He never drives himself and makes the driver pay for them.
March 20, 2019, 10:26 am
Mark from Stuyvesant Heights says:
Henry, keep going on with the Saul Alinsky brainwashing tactics against Trump supporters. Obama’s biggest supporters are from violent, impoverished areas like Detroit, St. Louis, Oakland, East New York, Brownsville, etc... are you saying that these areas are full of intellectuals? Perhaps you, like other Democrats, do not feel these people have any value other than for votes.
March 20, 2019, 10:26 am
Susan Rosenfeld from Sheepshead Bay says:
To the writer from Windsor Terrace, Monies from summonses for speeding near schools have already been distributed to the families of children and their parents who have been injured going or coming from schools. That's what the funds have been earmarked for. If you are a careful driver you have nothing to be concerned about.
March 20, 2019, 11:59 am
Voting for Trump from Windsor Terrace says:
I agree that Democrats no longer have morals or values. The New Green Deal by Ocasio-Cortez should have been placed in the garbage dump immediately. Unfortunately, no one told this ignorant person to stop talking as all Democrats, including Cuomo, are afraid of her. 25,000 high paying Amazon jobs were lost because Cuomo was sleeping when AOC was killing this deal. Instead of selling the Amazon deal, Cuomo decided to manufacture a plastic bag crisis which doesn't exist. Just imagine going grocery shopping and having to carry shopping items in paper bags without handles when they fall apart in the rain or the bag rips and the now glass bottles crack as Cuomo will be following up with ordering companies to stop using plastic containers. Just think of all the trees which will be destroyed, using fossil fuels to power the electric saws to cut down these trees, to transport the wood to the factories to power the electric needed to make the wood into paper bags and the power to heat these factories and the added cost to deliver these heavy weighted paper bags to the stores in contrast to light weight plastic bag production? And the 3,000 jobs in New York State which will be lost when Cuomo stops the production of plastic shopping bags? This is why I will be voting for Trump in 2020.
March 20, 2019, Noon
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Whenever revenue is mentioned, it should be known that safety is only secondary. If this got motorists to follow traffic laws, then no revenue can be made off of it and it will be seen as a net money loser. Hearing about all these cameras is sort of like a George Orwell novel brought to life in which is this one is Big Brother where there were cameras everywhere as well. Seriously, I'm tired of us motorists always being seen as the cash cow for just about everything. This almost reminds me of a quote said by Homer Simpson in the episode Donnie Fatso, "The system is broke so they find a new way to make up for it by sticking it to the little guy." I doubt that these cameras will extend to having pedestrians and cyclists flouting the laws because those over on Transportation Alternatives will start crying foul to that should that ever happen.
March 20, 2019, 12:04 pm
Voting for Trump from Windsor Terrace says:
Susan from Sheepshead Bay: I do not object about the speed cameras; rather I feel that drivers to text, make illegal u-turns, talk on the phone are dangerous and be ticketed as they are driving unsafely. A $50 fine really isn't going to take these unsafe drivers off the road. There's not a single day when driving that I don't see at least one ticketable incident but no cop around. Most of the time it are cars with TLC plates committing the offense. Then there are the electric scooters from the Chinese food places, the Yuppie skate boards and bikers weaving in and out of traffic - why are the police ticketing these violators?
March 20, 2019, 12:07 pm
Henry Ford from Bay Ridge says:
There's always some mouthbreathing dullard in the comment section bragging that they support trump. His base is ignorant and uneducated. This one happens to be from Windsor Terrace.
March 20, 2019, 1:16 pm
Tyler from pps says:
DON'T SPEED and you won't get a ticket. DON'T SPEED and the city won't get any extra revenue from you. DON'T SPEED and the speed cameras won't take your picture. DON'T SPEED and maybe you'll save someone's life.
March 20, 2019, 1:42 pm
Henry Blasey-Ford from Bay Ridge says:
Cuomo took care of those pesky unborn babies so now he has to prove that he cares about kids, gotta love those Demonrat politicians!
March 20, 2019, 2:05 pm
Susan Rosenfeld from Sheepshead Bay says:
To Ted from Pleasantville, Here in NYC motorists are in the minority as most of us use public transportation or walk. There have been many, without exaggeration kids walking to school with their parents in the crosswalk with the green light hit by drivers speeding. Where you live almost everyone drives, here it is the opposite. Kids have been killed and critically injured by reckless drivers.
March 20, 2019, 3:10 pm
Spike Levy from Fort Greenberg says:
Hey Rosenfeld, you’re totally delusional about kids being killed by cars in schools zones. How bout we put those cameras in parts of the hood and clean up the gang problem, do you realize how many young kids have been killed by gun violence and no one seems to bat an eye? Black on black crime does not matter to these corrupt politicians.
March 20, 2019, 3:47 pm
Sid from Boerum Hill says:
Go sit in DMV traffic court for a few hours..there are two in Brooklyn one in Atlantic terminal and one in Coney island. They are open to the public as all courts except family court generally are. You will see mostly tlc licensed drivers there. Not only will they be fined if convicted they will then be fined or suspended by tlc. You should look at the police state on crime at Crime is slightly up from last year but down in the 75 percent range over the last 15 years. I know that trumps people have some legitimate greviences but not crime in NYC. The 1950s were not perfect for everyone and they aren't coming back.
March 20, 2019, 4:31 pm
Henry Ford from Bay Ridge says:
It doesn't take a forensic scientist to see that "Henry Blasey-Ford from Bay Ridge" & "Spike Levy from Fort Greenberg" is "Voting for Trump from Windsor Terrace" posting under different names to spew vitriol. That shows you the type of people who support trump: misogynistic, rape apologists, racist, and antisemitic.
March 20, 2019, 4:45 pm
Frank from Furter says:
its pretty ironic that Henry Ford accuses someone of being antisemitic.
March 20, 2019, 9:14 pm
Gerard from Brooklyn says:
Cuomo’s brain could fit in a thimble and there still would be plenty of room left. He is a complete imbecile. He is taxing the average resident out of here.
March 20, 2019, 9:49 pm
Wilbur D. Horse from Banannadale says:
It's not "for our own good," or even about the revenue. It is truly about Big Brother wanting to watch over us 24 hours a day. Do not let the government say that it's for our safety. For example, would you feel the same way if you saw a cop standing on every single corner in your neighborhood, watching every move you made? Would you shrug it off? No.
March 21, 2019, 6:22 am
Charles from Bklyn says:
Good to hear the police are pulling over red light drivers. However, it doesn't change the fact that we should not give government the right to watch us at every turn. People who believe speed cameras are the solution are SHEEP, which are known to be easy lead to their demise.
March 21, 2019, 10:21 am
Real Henry Ford from Bay Ridge says:
Lol at how everyone in this comment section wants to be Henry Ford. You all owe me money.
March 21, 2019, 1:17 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Susan, first of all get my name right because it's Tal, not Ted, plus you wouldn't like it if someone got your name wrong. Nonetheless, vehicle ownership may not be big in the major areas of NYC especially in Manhattan, but they are as you go further afield and this due to the lack of transit hence the transit deserts. In all honesty, I don't see red light cameras as a way making safety, bur rather as another revenue that treats us motorists as the cash cow. Being against the cameras doesn't mean that I'm for reckless driving, but I feel that there are better ways to enforce the laws without causing such paranoia. Believe it or not, those that stopped for red lights due to the presence of cameras actually lead to other accidents such as fender benders due to sudden stops. BTW, I feel that safety needs to come from all groups not just a few. There have been cases when pedestrians and cyclists got hit when they themselves weren't following the traffic laws. When they do that, they are literally placing themselves into harm's way, but of course places such as Streetsblog and Transportation Alternatives will always see that is a good PR statement to say that motor vehicles are evil. This sort of brings up another George Orwell novel known as Animal Farms where there was a certain group of animals that believed that due to who they were, they were exempt from the laws while all others had to follow every letter of it with high enforcement.
March 23, 2019, 12:17 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
More on the subject of animal farm, which I find to be a good fit to the usual spin cycle put on by bikers. Four wheels good, two wheels better! Instead of being brayed by sheep, it is being brayed by cyclists. Almost the same thing, as cyclists tend to follow the herd whereas motorists actually have to work fo ra living. If bikers want their own lanes, they should build them from scratch and without a penny from taxpayers. The facts show that cyclists cause more accidents than motorists, and that far more pedestrians die from being hit by cyclists than by cars. In fact, a study once showed that cyclists cause more global warming than motorists. I am just stating the facts. BTW my name is Tal, short for Talmud, not Ted as in Ted Kazyinscki the onion bomber. I am sick and tired of footing the bill for all you cyclists.
March 23, 2019, 6:21 pm

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