Village of Montgomery Chief of Police William Herlihy announced at the village board meeting last Tuesday that the department is looking into purchasing a traffic count.
The traffic count would be used to keep track of data such as vehicle speeds, types, weights as well as the timeframe of traffic. The idea for this device came after residents reported speeding and overweight vehicles throughout the village.
This traffic count would employ tubes laid across the roadway. Once vehicles drive over the tubes, data would be displayed on a screen attached to a telephone pole. The software’s battery power lasts approximately two weeks. After that, officers would remove the device, charge it and review the data that was collected.
Herlihy added that the device would cost the department between $1,700 and $2,000.
“We can use it on any street,” Herlihy said. “We can post it and it’ll just sit there inconspicuous and gather the statistical data that we’re looking for and we’ll be able to publish a report that will be open to view by community residents.”
Furthermore, Herlihy discussed Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s executive order on policing reform. The executive order, ‘New York State Police Reform and Reinvention Collaborative’ demands that police departments adopt a plan for reform by April 1, 2021 to be eligible for future state funding.
“Many communities all across the country are dealing with issues concerning their police departments,” Cuomo said. “The millions of people who gathered in protest, even in the midst of a public health crisis, made that clear. The situation is unsustainable for all.”
The executive order was established in June and new guidance was issued on Aug. 17. The governor issued a letter to 500 jurisdictions with police departments in the state, outlining the collaborative process.
He noted that the collaborative process should review the needs of the community served by its police agency and evaluate the department’s current policies and practices. The plan should establish policies that allow police to effectively and safely perform their duties. The entire community should be involved in the discussion and policy recommendations should result from this review. A plan for public comment should be offered. A proposition should be presented to the local legislative body to ratify or adopt it.
“Maintaining public safety is imperative; it is one of the essential roles of government,” Cuomo said. “In order to achieve that goal, there must be mutual trust and respect between police and the communities they serve. The success and safety of our society depends on restoring and strengthening mutual trust. With crime growing in many cities, we must seize this moment of crisis and turn it into an opportunity for transformation.”