On behalf of the Garden City Police Department, commissioner Ernest Cipullo addressed a "perceived lack of enforcement" on Clinton Road and Washington Avenue, noting that more than 8,000 summonses were issued on both roadways combined since the beginning of 2010.
"As the board knows, the whole year of 2010 up until the present time we've been operating with seven vacant positions," Cipullo said. However, he added, in that time police issued 4,750 summonses on Clinton Road and another 4,080 summonses on Washington Avenue.
"I just want to clear up the perception that we're not doing anything," Cipullo said, addressing recent resident concerns about speeding in the village. "Someone's writing the summonses."
The vacant positions will soon be filled as three recruits are scheduled to begin the police academy May 24 and another two "prior experience" officers will take to the streets shortly.
"You'll be swearing them in at the next board meeting," Cipullo said. "We won't see [the three recruits] for six months but we're getting them in."
Merillon Avenue's Kathleen Auro said she's seen first hand speeding in the village. "I was on the road coming on Rockaway a car passed me, and it was right near Cathedral Nursery School where your device is that tells how fast people are going, and a car passed me and he was clocked or she was clocked going 57 miles per hour on Rockaway near Cathedral Nursery School," she said.
"I do not think it's necessarily out of towners who speed through our village. I think sometimes it's very impatient citizens who don't like the fact that perhaps I have slowed down to try to obey the law trying to go past the high school that says 20 miles per hour and right after that area 57 miles per hour. That's fast. You're not even supposed to go on the Southern State at 57 miles per hour."
Trustee John Watras, village board liaison to the police department, said he's talked about speeding with the commissioner on several occasions.
"We're very concerned with the high speed traffic coming through the village," Watras said. "We've discussed that with you on a number of occasions and that's going to be eradicated and addressed a lot more."