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City Hallways (July 13) Buffalo police giving out more tickets

This speed sign on Parkside is among BPD efforts to slow traffic.

This speed sign on Parkside is among BPD efforts to slow traffic.

City issuing  more  tickets

For those thinking city police are writing more traffic tickets lately, they are correct.

From January 2015 to June 2015, the city issued 21,228 tickets;

From January 2016 to June 2016, the city issued 24,413.

That's according to Lt. Jeff Rinaldo, who attended a Council Committee meeting Tuesday to discuss the Council's request for a further crackdown on speeding on Moselle Street, where a 7-month-old girl was recently killed when the stroller she was in was struck by a car.

The heightened traffic enforcement began last year citywide, Rinaldo said.

"It's a  problem throughout the city in terms of  speeding, running stop signs and other moving  violations," he said.

Council members like the beefed-up enforcement. Some suggested not allowing speeders to routinely plead down to lesser charges in traffic court. That could cut into city revenue, now that Buffalo runs its own traffic court. Speeding ticket fines become largely state revenue, but when pled down to parking fines, that money ends up largely in city coffers.

But saving lives is more important than collecting more money, some Council members said.

Historic moment

Tuesday's Council Legislation Committee meeting was a bit historic. Fillmore Councilman Dave Franczyk chaired the committee - his first time chairing a committee since 2012.

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"A little rusty," Franczyk said when the meeting ended. "A tin man with a can of oil."

Franczyk  chaired lots of committees during his  30-year career on the Council prior to 2012, when he was toppled as council president, and replaced by colleagues more aligned with Mayor Brown.

Franczyk's new assignment reflects the generally friendly relations on the  Common Council these days.

In today's Buffalo News and buffalonews.com, my colleague Jonathan Epstein has story on Planning Board decision on the Lloyd taco restaurant planned for Elmwood Avenue

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