Glendale Riled Over School Street Woes
The 104th Precinct’s new executive officer tackled traffic issues and crime during his visit to the Glendale Property Owners Association (GPOA) meeting last Thursday, Mar. 6, at St. Pancras Pfeifer Hall.
Capt. Tim Brown told the GPOA his role as executive officer at the 104th Precinct is to “focus mostly on traffic, quality of life issues and graffiti.”
“We’ll be doing a lot with traffic and pedestrian safety,” Brown said.is to “focus mostly on traffic, quality of life issues and graffiti. We’ll be doing a lot with traffic and pedestrian safety,” Brown said.
Replying to GPOA President Brian Dooley raising a concern over parents that park illegally when dropping-off and picking-up children near local schools, Capt. Brown tried to relate the delicate balance he has to strike with the community between lax enforcement and rigid policing.
Striking that correct balance requires officers to enforce existing laws, and keep a community safe, but not to bombard residents with sever penalties and heavy-handed policing.
“It’s a touchy thing. This is the parents of our community,” Brown said.
Det. Thomas Bell of the 104th Precinct Community Affairs Unit put the issue in focus from the NYPD perspective.
“What the captain is saying [is] do we want to go after them (parents),” Bell said.
“We know it’s an issue,” Brown added. As for a possible solution, he said, “These parents need to be told it’s a community issue.”
Brown added that he knows it has become a problem, not only in Glendale, but in many neighborhoods. “Every single meeting we go to, it’s the same complaint.”
According to the captain, the precinct has done targeted traffic enforcement sweeps and parents will comply for a period, but the problem continues because following the increased ticketing, most return to the old behavior–parking illegally in front of hydrants, blocking driveways and impeding the flow of traffic.
In response to residents concerned that parents face no consequences for this activity, Brown said “Yeah, do we give summonses out, yeah sometimes. It’s an ongoing problem.”
Brown then addressed larger scale pedestrian safety issues like speeding. In the wake in Mayor Bill de Blasio’s “Vision Zero” traffic safety initiative which seeks to eliminate pedestrian deaths from traffic accidents, local precincts are stepping up efforts to reign-in driver scofflaws.
Brown told the group “my officers have discussed a speeding initiative at two locations because of community complaints.”
Brown also discussed the new city ban on electric bikes and people collecting bottles out of residential trash cans. He made clear to the group that the so-called “e-bikes” are illegal in the city.
The electronic powered vehicles look like scooters, and are often used by food delivery drivers. They have become an issue because the vehicles are often not properly registered or insured.
According to the captain, new enforcement will be stepped up shortly.
In the “next two weeks, we’re going to be taking those (vehicles),” Brown said. He made the announcement for the benefit of all in the community, but wants businesses that employ drivers to know that they are now illegal.
“It’s illegal and unsafe. So the merchants know, it’s a pedestrian safety issue,” he said.
Dooley expressed concern about bottle collectors sifting through residential trash, Capt. Brown told the group that the Department of Sanitation does have enforcement officers, but “not that many” and advised that bottle seekers are not allowed to through garbage or recycling unless it’s been put out on the curb.
Turning to other matters, Dooley reiterated the group’s opposition to the proposed construction of a homeless shelter in Glendale by Samaritan Village, a company that has come under recent increased financial scrutiny after a state audit revealed possible corruption and misuse of government donated funds.
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The Glendale Property Owners Association meets on the first Thursday of every month at the St. Pancras School located at 68-20 Myrtle Ave. in Glendale.