Albany County adopts bus-passing law

Albany County

ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Everybody knows you have to stop for school buses when they deploy the stop arm to pick up and drop off students. Now, Albany County is adopting Local Law C to help catch people violating the rules.

Passing the local law is supposed to help school districts implement monitoring systems on their buses and roadways. Drivers who illegally pass a school bus will be caught on camera.

The fine for passing a stopped school bus ranges from a minimum of $250 for the first offense and $300 for a third offense.

In 2019, New York enacted the school bus camera safety act allowing for monitoring systems to impose fines on vehicles. Police no longer had to directly observe the violation in order to write the ticket. Albany County’s Local Law C takes advantage of this opportunity by setting up a program for school districts to get monitoring systems.

“This is a public safety issue, and this is something that has to do with our kids,” said Beroro T. Efekoro, a Democratic Albany County Legislator. “It’s great to see that we have people who are working tirelessly to make sure that when our kids go to school they are safe wherever they are.”

An estimated 50,000 or more drivers illegally pass school buses every day. Sponsors of the bill are encouraging local school districts to participate to help protect their students from drivers like these.

“This is a good law,” said Peter B. Tunny, a Republican legislator. “This protects children in Albany County, and I know this has the support of hundreds of school bus drivers throughout the county. And I also know that this law has been replicated in other counties throughout new york.”

The systems may be stationary or mobile and can be installed on buses owned or operated by a school district. The stationary systems would be installed on county roadways.

The legislation takes into account the privacy of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, and cyclists who may be captured in a photograph by a school bus photo violation monitoring device and requires the county to adopt measures that protect an individual’s identity.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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