Albany looking at rewards for info on illegal use of dirt bikes, ATVs

July 11, 2019 10:51 AM

ALBANY – The City of Albany is looking at a new way to cut down on the illegal use of dirt bikes and ATVs in the city. The Albany Common Council is considering a resolution that would authorize a rewards program.

“We've had situations here on Lark Street, which have been videos and on social media,” said Albany common councilman Richard Conti. “I've had my own experience about a month ago on Central Avenue near Hannaford plaza.”

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On Monday, July 10 Conti plans to introduce the resolution to the common council. He said it’s not a solution to the problem, but a tool the city can use.

“It allows a reward of up to $1,000 for information leading to individuals involved in a misdemeanor or up to $25,000 for issues related to a felony,” explained Conti.

As of May, Albany Police have impounded about six ATVs. The challenge for police with this problem, is that it’s dangerous for officers to chase after ATV or dirt bike drivers. Conti said this resolution gives Albany Police Chief Eric Hawkins the opportunity to develop the program how he wants.

“The chief would have to develop the standards and guidelines for the relevant information that would lead to identification and conviction,” said Conti. “You would have to be able to provide information that relates to illegal use.”

However, Conti said even with this resolution he still wants to do more about the problem.

“We should look at are there recreational opportunities we can identify and create that might help address the problem,” said Conti.

Conti said he has spoken with both Albany Police Chief Eric Hawkins and Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan and he said they are both on board with the program. After it’s introduced, it’s then referred to the public safety committee for further review and discussion.


Emily De Vito

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