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Pilot Program For Speed Cameras In City Considered By State Legislature

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Speed cameras could get the green light in Albany, as a bill to enact a pilot program in New York City is under consideration. NY1's Zack Fink filed the following report.

ALBANY - Lindsey Ganson is advocating for speed cameras after her father was run over by a car on a Brooklyn street.

"A driver came barreling down a residential street, going over 40 miles per hour, and ran over my father in the crosswalk, while my sister, still a teenager, watched," she said.

Ganson's father, Hutch, suffered a traumatic brain injury.

"My injuries were quite substantial," Hutch Ganson said. "I'm lucky I'm still alive, and for that, I'm happy about. But I go to therapy on Tuesdays and Thursdays."

A bill would authorize the city to begin a pilot program where speed cameras would be installed near schools. Speeding motorists would then be ticketed automatically if they broke the speed limit.

"We really need these cameras," said state Senate Independent Democratic Conference leader Jeff Klein. "I think we have to send a message that speeding around our schools won't be tolerated."

Sources told NY1 that the speed camera bill is the top legislative priority for Mayor Michael Bloomberg. But the bill has faced opposition from Republican state Senator Martin Golden, who helped block it from being included in the state budget in March.

When asked about Golden's opposition then, Bloomberg said, "Maybe you want to give those phone numbers to the parents of the child when a child is killed. That would be useful so that the parents can know exactly who's to blame."

Golden still has issues with the bill.

"Well, there is a concern here that they don't work, and that the, many of the counties and towns, villages around the country are pulling the speed cameras back," he said.

Klein is now the bill's sponsor.

"I've introduced this bill," he said. "We have an assembly sponsor. And as I said, I'm going to make this one of my priorities in the home stretch, and hopefully, we can get this done."

On Wednesday, the City Council passed a home rule message urging the legislature to take action on speed cameras. It is the second action the council has formally asked Albany to act.

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