By Chris Rotolo |
LITTLE SILVER – More strenuous traffic ticketing is set to take hold in Little Silver.
In the February Mayor’s Message by Mayor Bob Neff, posted on the borough website, Little Silver police officers are being urged to issue more tickets, rather than verbal warnings, to local drivers who fail to act in accordance with the borough’s speeding and cellphone use laws.
“In the coming months, our police officers are being asked to exercise their discretion far less in favor of issuing a warning, and much more often in favor of issuing a summons, particularly for speeding or cellphone violations, and especially near schools, walking routes to schools and the train station, and frequent pedestrian routes,” read the Mayor’s Note.
The crackdown should be applied to residents and nonresidents alike; Neff addressed the common perception that this decision was made with a revenue boost in mind.
“Little Silver has never asked its police department to issue tickets just to bring in revenue. This is not being done for revenue purposes,” Neff said in an interview with The Two River Times. “Revenue is irrelevant to this equation. What matters is safety.
“We have good people in this town who care about their kids; older members of our community who want to feel safe around town. All we’re saying with this is to keep your fellow residents in mind and drive safely. And if you’re from out of town and shooting through on a county ride, please be safe, because it’s not going to be a warning anymore. We’re asking nicely.”
Neff said this new focus on ticketing is the result of a borough that “periodically” struggles with speeding issues and hopes the warning will help drivers be more vigilant in their travels along seven county roads weaving through the municipality, not to mention side streets and avenues that feature three public schools, one nursery school, a train station and a bustling downtown area.
Neff and the borough have recently taken action to enhance public safety by having pedestrian walkways around town repainted, while pedestrian crossing signs have been placed at various intersections and in the middle of roadways. There have also been new stop signs and lit pedestrian crossing signals installed in an effort to control the flow of traffic.
According to Neff, these upgrades have accompanied various requests that have come in newsletters, borough website postings and officer interactions with residents, pleading for drivers to abide by speed limit signs and stay off their cellphones.
However, the mayor says these bids for compliance have seemingly fallen on deaf ears and blind eyes.
“Sometimes the nice nice-guy route doesn’t work,” Neff said in the Mayor’s Note. “Frustration sets in when some drivers decide to ignore the law and public safety, and continue to speed, or fail to stop for pedestrians in cross walks, or talk on phones.”
“These improvements made around town have come at considerable effort, time and expense, and I think it hasn’t had the impact we wanted,” Neff added in the interview. “Our sense is, if infractions are met with tickets it will make drivers a little more vigilant. That’s the name of the game.”
This article was first published in the Feb. 15-22, 2018 print edition of The Two River Times.
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