Tifton may install cameras in school zones

The police chief says too many drivers are speeding

Tifton city leaders look at cameras as way to slow down school zone speeders

TIFTON, Ga. (WALB) - Tifton’s Police Chief Steve Hyman said they’re having a problem with people speeding in school zones.

He talked about it Monday night during a council work session, asking the council to look into having cameras installed near school zones to help slow down speeders.

Tifton Police Chief Steve Hyman
Tifton Police Chief Steve Hyman (Source: WALB)

After complaints to city leaders about drivers speeding in school zones, a study was done in Tifton school zones, and the cameras would take pictures of license plates to help identify the offenders

Hyman said “the results are sort of surprising. Well not surprising, but I guess, alarming.”

City Manager Pete Pyrzenski restated one of the study’s stats provided by Chief Hyman: ”from 7:30 to 8:30 in the morning, this is a five day period, 68 percent of the cars were speeding.”

Hyman said a program from Blue Line Solutions would help provide equipment to put cameras up in the school zones to combat speeding.

Tifton councilman Pete Pyrzenski
Tifton councilman Pete Pyrzenski (Source: WALB)

The council is expected to vote on this sometime soon and they seem to be on board with it.

Councilman Jack Folk spoke the most in favor of the program. ”And get those areas that are the largest offenders first. That’s the most important thing that we do is providing safety for the residents.”

Pyrzenski said this is not a revenue-producing tactic, but a way to provide safety and slow down speeders.

You could see more food trucks throughout Tifton

Food trucks could soon be setting up in more parts of Tifton and maybe closer to your home.

It was also talked about Monday night during council member’s work session.

Community Development leaders propose changes to a city code to allow food trucks in Neighborhood Commercial zoning areas within the City of Tifton. Currently, food trucks can only set up in commercial, downtown, and general business zones, according to city officials.

Leaders said people are asking to have food trucks in this zoning district.

Crystal Gillard with the City’s Department of Community Improvement spoke about this to council Monday night.

Tifton Councilman Jack Folk
Tifton Councilman Jack Folk (Source: WALB)

Gillard said “the planning and zoning commission felt that this was consistent with neighborhood commercial zoning. As neighborhood commercial is meant to have the amenities and shopping, and the luxuries within the neighborhood area.”

12th Avenue West near Taco Loco Mexican Grill and Sherman- Williams Paint Store would be an example of a Neighborhood Commercial zoning area.

Crystal Gillard
Crystal Gillard (Source: WALB)

They said food trucks would be a benefit for the many employees and employers in the area when they want to grab lunch close to their place of work.

Food trucks would still have to be 100 feet away from brick and mortar restaurants and have 15 off-street parking spots around them for customers.

No one from the public spoke for or against the proposed change at Monday night’s work session.

Council is expected to vote on this during their next regularly scheduled meeting.

Hazard Pay Extended

Also Monday night, City of Tifton leaders extended hazard duty pay for police and fire department staff.

The council voted to extend their hazard pay until June 30th.

The pay bonuses started because of the pandemic and council member believe first responders are just as much at risk of catching the virus now as they were at the start of the pandemic,

Pyrzenski said “I think so, because there’s a lot of people that are visiting, out of town traveling, again, they’re in proximity. Whether it’s an accident or whether it’s a traffic stop they have to be vigilant in everything they do now.”

City leader said the hazard pay for first responders will continue to be funded through COVID relief funds.

This is an extension of what was passed by the council last year and this would be the third extension.

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