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Question of the Day: Should Albany Allow Long Beach to Reduce Speed Limit?

Weigh in with your thoughts on this issue.

The Long Beach City Council voted on June 7 to have the city seek the required permission from the state Legislature and Assembly to reduce the maximum speed limit to 15 miles per hour on streets in the Presidents Streets neighborhood: Cleveland, Harding, Mitchell, Belmont, Atlantic, Coolidge, Wilson and Taft avenues.

While in years past the city had moved successfully to reduce speed limits in both the West End and Canals neighborhoods, its efforts to take the same action for the President Streets was not approved by the legislature in 2005.

Answer this question in the comments: Do you have confidence that the state Legislature will approve this reduction in speed on the Presidents Streets — and should it?  

LBLover June 20, 2011 at 01:03 PM
Why wouldn't they? Not sure why Albany should have any say at all
Trying to Make Sense June 20, 2011 at 01:12 PM
I can see how Albany would be concerned about uniformity and the possibility that some small munis might abuse the power to create speed trap zones to raise revenues, but neighborhood speed limits seem the perfect issue to allow home rule (within reason) at the most local level. I'd even allow small munis to enhance the fines for violations in neighborhood districts to encourage compliance and improve the safety of the streets that are lined with the homes that children, parents, grandparents, WE live in.
Richard Boodman June 20, 2011 at 02:11 PM
They will pass it this time thanks to City Councilman Len Torres and Assemblyman Weisenberg. The bill died in the Senate (NY State) according to the City Manager Theofan (Aug 3, 2010 City Council meeting.) At first, City Council President Sofield placed the blame on the Assemblyman (Weisenberg) but Mr. Theofan said "It died in the Senate (Skelos.)" However, when I asked if they had done their due dillegence and lobbied both houses the way the teacher's union does for its constituents, there was no answer. They dropped the ball. They let their constituents down.You can listen to a copy of the recording at the City Clerk's office on the 3rd floor of City Hall. It's all there in black and white, 58 minutes and 40 seconds into the meeting. The fact is, the Long Beach Republicans, after being asked by some of their constituents to try to reduce the speed limit in the President Streets to 15MPH, didn't do their jub............. The purpose of government is to protect the people. When it comes to traffic safety, the Long Beach Republicans continue to put us at risk. We have has a thousand accident s a year for the last fouryears and too many deaths. At that same meeting, Councilman Torres said he woukd dedicate his time to reach a solution, and he did. We all owe Councilman Torres a vote of thanks for keeping his word and working with Assemblyman Weisenberg to get the legislation introduced. I have no doubt that it will pass this time.
Paul Justice June 20, 2011 at 06:16 PM
I think the City of Long Beach needs "enabling" legislation to lower their speed limits. Albany's involvement is to simply grant the City permission from the state to vote on it. Even if Albany passses the bill, the speed limits can not be lowered until the City Council votes. The council can't vote without a law from the state.
Clem June 20, 2011 at 07:06 PM
More stupid, feel-good laws that simply can't be enforced. Does anyone really, truly think the LBPD will put a radar unit at the end of Wilson and pull over a driver traveling at 16 MPH? There are 40 MS-13 gang members living in one building ob Broadway, terrorizing residents on the Boardwalk every afternoon and night and the LBPD does nothing. Anyone who thinks a 15 MPH speed limit on Wilson Avenue is going to protect anyone is simply playing with them self.
Lisa June 20, 2011 at 07:29 PM
After reading Clem's comment I'm glad I moved to Lido. The city is becoming eastern Queens. 15 mph is impossible to enforce (my car idles faster than that!) and let's face it; no one does the speed limit on ANY road. The President streets are the least of Long Beach's problems. Try enforcing a speed limit on Broadway or Park Ave. Not to mention the recent "wilding" on the boardwalk.
Michele Reinbach June 20, 2011 at 08:21 PM
I wrote a column last October...http://longbeach.patch.com/articles/what-happened-to-slowing-down-the-presidents-streets regarding this, as it was a concern for many residents who live there. Here we are in June, the summer has begun and the sound of sirens and ambulances are already too pervasive in our city. It should be as clear as screeching tires, crashing vehicles or screams of witnesses and/or victims hit that we need to reduce the speed limits in our city. So, should Albany allow Long Beach to reduce the speed limit. YES, absolutely YES. And, not just in the President Streets, but across our city. Please, join the 20 is Plenty in Long Beach campaign by emailing me. If you haven't read this column, http://longbeach.patch.com/articles/20-is-plenty-in-long-beach, please do. Share it with your neighbors. Let's save lives!
Jack June 20, 2011 at 08:45 PM
The question was should Albany allow LB to reduce the speed limit on the President streets? You didn't answer the question. Instead, you went off on a political rant and jumped on a political bandwagon instead of answering a simple question. But, since you did, why not tell us exactly what it was that Mr. Weisenberg and Mr. Torres have done? Not what they "said" they have done. But, EXACTLY what they have done ?Because as far as I can see, the two of them sure haven't done anything in their respective offices up until now, except expel a lot of hot air.
Clem June 20, 2011 at 09:13 PM
Anyone who thinks that throwing up 20 MPH signs all over Long Beach is going to make the place safer is living in a cubicle and should get out and see the real world. Why not put up 5 MPH signs --- then it will REALLY be REAL SPECIAL safe! Oh yea, and if you use a cell phone -- lets make that a $100,000 fine. Idiots.
tom June 20, 2011 at 11:11 PM
we need a 15 mph speed limit on the 400 west chester block as well. it is ridiculous the way people constantly speed down this one way, its even more ridiculous when a few brain dead fools drive the wrong way at high speed.
HugoCubano June 21, 2011 at 03:14 AM
15 MPH? HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!! I live on West Park Ave with a 15 MPH sign on the lightpost just before Lindell Deli. I'll give you all a wild guess as to how many cars go 15 MPH? ZERO!
Richard June 21, 2011 at 11:39 AM
Just another way for the city to squeeze money out of the residents. Someone has to pay for all those stop signs.
Ivan Bexter June 21, 2011 at 12:45 PM
I live in LB & truth is speed limit signs wont do a damn thing. Just as all the stop signs do nothing. The problem I see is MOTORISTS of all walks of life, teens, moms, men. old men, old ladies. The one common denominator with the above: DRIVER INATTENTION, DISREGARD for said signs & limits, & absolute ARROGANCE at anyone that calls them on thier poor driving. How many drivers in hi end Mercs BMW Audi Caddys ect. that simply refuse to signal any intention they have to turn change lanes & so on.... Give it a rest! Lower speed limits would be a waste of time except for the courts
Dina Solomita Merritt June 21, 2011 at 12:56 PM
Really? 15 mph? Why allow people to even drive in Long Beach. Just will create more income for the City. Thats all its about.
Earthling June 21, 2011 at 01:08 PM
I have no confidence, none, in any politician. I do not believe in political promises. I think democracy is a myth. Yet, I vote, I'm law abiding, I care about the community and the environment, I fight against injustices, and I believe in a better world. It is not the speed limit, it is people. Its always been about people, about us. We ultimately have the power to decide. Long Beach has as residents, lots of uncivilized people, uneducated in human relations, intolerant to others, racists, and what's worse, with an attitude that the world revolves around them. But it also has as residents, people that care about one another, independently of their economic, social, political, or immigration status. But Im afraid we are the minority. When you drive, be courteous, cede the way to those drivers who are driving fast to nowhere, beware of pedestrians, no matter their weight or color, they have a right to walk. Please be careful driving when you see children, teenagers, bikers, older people; we as drivers have the advantage, the control, the view, and the responsibility. What's so difficult about doing this? Be an example, but be prepared to get honk when you go try to do the right thing, like slowing down for pedestrian or slow cars. What's the hurry, anyway, if you hurry you worry, and then you'll be sorry. Lets make it a happy summer!!!
Richard Boodman June 21, 2011 at 01:16 PM
Open your eyes Jackie. Expand your horizons. Eliminate the tunnel vision. I answered the questions in my first and last sentences. And don't forget to thank Len torres for his ongoing efforts. He is a man of his word (City Council meeting August 3, 2010.) Now.... can he count on your vote?
Richard Boodman June 21, 2011 at 01:24 PM
I beg to differ on the stop sign issue, Ivan. Even since the all way stop signs were installed, most motorists are a lot more cautious than they were before. I see that everywhere. that's a good thing. Lower speed limits strictly enforced will save lives and property. Give it a chance.
Richard Boodman June 21, 2011 at 01:26 PM
20 (MPH) is plenty for the side streets.
Dina Solomita Merritt June 21, 2011 at 01:36 PM
People need to stop making excuses and take responsibility for their actions on both ends. Drivers as well as pedestrians, bike riders and even the elderly in their motorized chairs. Lower speed limits will do nothing to rid the ignorance of people.
Mike Charles June 21, 2011 at 07:07 PM
Why not put speed bumps in the middle of all streets and giant potholes across Park Avenue (oh, sorry, they're already there)! Ridiculously low speed limits only serve as a revenue producer for LB gained on the "backs" mostly of local residents i.e., the Canals, etc. Local cops just park themselves in unmarked cars at the entrance to an affected section of LB then follow a likely "violator" and, GOTCHA, when the "speeder" does 16 MPH. It's at least 50 bucks out of your wallet and points. It always happens in the early hours, rarely on weekends and 9 out of 10 "violators" are local residents. No wonder people are cynical!
Michele Reinbach June 21, 2011 at 10:09 PM
We all seem to agree that we want our community to be a safer one. How to achieve this is the question and as with all questions, there are a multitude of answers. Reading over the comments, it is clear that no matter what the solution is to improve traffic safety, the people of Long Beach feel that the RESPONSIBILITY begins with residents and visitors abiding the laws of the road. What exactly is RESPONSIBILITY? To me, it is the ability to respond to your actions. If caught breaking the law, tickets or severe penalties may be the eye-openers for some, especially if it was a very stiff fine or points on their license. For others, it may be the unthinkable. A horrific traffic accident that caused yes, read this word, and say it out loud. DEATH. Imagine that if you are lucky enough to walk away from a tragedy that you caused, you would continue to live with the knowledge that being irresponsible caused something senseless, something that could have been avoided. Something that caused hearts to be broken and pain that lasts forever. People often say things won't change unless someone experiences a personal tragedy. Let's prove this statement wrong. And, as stated by Earthling, "Let's make it a Happy Summer!"
Jack June 22, 2011 at 02:17 AM
As I asked, please clarify all of these efforts by Councilman Torres. Where are these ongoing efforts? I mean really. The guy is completely full of hot air. I realize your concerns are very altruistic and you want certain things that are for the betterment of the community but Torres has done absolutely nothing. He will "yes" you to death and then do what he feels benefits his public personna. I would rather someone just say, "no" than listen to the "you know what" that this guy spews. Harvey is of the same mold. I don't think the man has ever written his own bill. He just jumps on everyone else's train as a co-sponsor. Fran I could vote for. Lenny? He's the kid who always said, "yes", so he didn't get beat up. Also, your boy Fagen, (who I had high hopes for) is a criminal. I know, I know, he's innocent until proven guilty. Like I said, he'll plea it out and leave you to explain. Sorry, Rich.
Preston June 22, 2011 at 02:40 AM
This is an example of politicians trying to look like they are doing something meaningful for a community hoping that the citizens forget about high school taxes, illegal aliens, wasteful spending ,welfare, high crime rate, etc. Put this legislation in the same category as cell phones , seatbelts and texting- useless laws that make little difference. Take time to analyze recent fatal car crashes: elderly driver who should not have been driving, road rage lunatics behind the wheel, inattentive/ under trained school bus operator, out of control truck driver. None of the above involved going over the speed limit
Richard Boodman June 22, 2011 at 03:09 AM
From whatI understand, Torres is out there pounding the pavement, reaching out to his constituents, and along with Weisenberg, prepared to do whatever it takes to get the legislation passed. I hope you are wrong. However, if all else fails, we can start a new party, The long Beach Party and run you and Neal and Clem for City Council. With my sign space and the army of geezers over at The Coffe Nut Cafe' behind you, it will be a piece of cake. And....With you guys in charge, the signs on the bridges will read, "WELCOME TO LONG BEACH, AMERICAS SAFEST CITY, ALL LAWS STRICTLY ENFORCED...... AND WE MEAN IT"
The Real Neal August 01, 2011 at 01:22 AM
WHAT!!??

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