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State lawmakers reach agreement on cameras for school buses

May 07, 2019 11:11 PM

State lawmakers in Albany say they reached a deal on installing cameras on school buses. The legislation has been in the works for the past several years. 

"It dictates that if they do opt into it that they need to establish a relationship with their local government for enforcement," said Assemblyman John McDonald (D), who has been a co-sponsor on the bill. 

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Any images of drivers who fail to stop when the red lights are flashing are transmitted to police.  A first time fine is $250 and then a third time fine is around $300. School districts will have to buy the cameras which could cost around $7,000 each.

"It really kind of gives guidelines for the business relationship," said McDonald referring to the legislation. "There are many vendors out there that are going to want to sell their products to school districts or they may enter into fine sharing agreements with school districts where they would take a percentage of the proceeds of the dispositions."

Parents said they're happy to see the legislation put in place.

"I have two children, they ride school buses and that would make me feel a lot more comfortable about having them being able to get on the bus," said parent Leah Akins. 

Once the bill passes through the legislature, it will then go to Governor Andrew Cuomo's desk. 

Gov. Cuomo released the following statement:

"The safety of our children is paramount, and we are committed to ensuring our youngest New Yorkers make it to and from school safely and that motorists who endanger these students are held accountable for their reckless actions. This year I advanced legislation to allow school districts and municipalities to install cameras on school buses.

"I commend the Legislature for reaching an agreement on this critical issue and I look forward to seeing it passed and to signing it into law, making New York one of the first states to use this technology to protect the safety of our school children."

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WNYT Staff

Copyright 2019 WNYT-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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