Next phase of Buffalo Reform Agenda launched Friday

Buffalo

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)–Mayor Brown launched the next phase of his City of Buffalo Reform Agenda on Friday.

According to Brown, this phase will extend the number of days people have to make minor vehicle repairs for “fix-it” tickets to 14 days, and introduce legislation to the Common Council that would repeal the 15 vehicle ordinances introduced and passed in 2018.

Brown says the new round of reforms will help address how certain vehicle and traffic ordinances, as well as their enforcement, have had a negative impact on black and lower-income residents in the Queen City.

“While vehicle and traffic safety is important, laws aimed at making our streets safer must be reviewed to ensure that they do not unintentionally place a burden on members of communities of color and low-income residents who were already struggling to make ends meet,” Mayor Brown said.

He added that he doesn’t want minor traffic violations to contribute to circumstances that could send a family into financial difficulty, and the reforms will benefit residents experiencing financial challenges caused by COVID-19.

The Mayor is working with the Common Council to repeal vehicle fines after he says, those ordinances, originally intended to enhance vehicle and traffic safety, have become obsolete with the installation of school zone cameras, bus arm cameras, and other technology solutions.

Mayor Brown says he will sign the repeals into law at the earliest possible opportunity.

He also made the policy of not releasing mugshots to the public permanent after the policy went through a trial period last year.

Following new authority granted to local law enforcement agencies in last night’s State Budget, the Buffalo Police Department stopped releasing mugshots to the public unless there was a specific or urgent public safety reason.

Brown says that policy will be the standing policy going forward. He says the release of these mugshots taken before conviction of any crime often contributed to racially biased perceptions of crime and reinforced prejudicial stereotypes.

Watch his full press conference below:

Troy Licastro is a digital content producer who has been part of the News 4 team since 2018. See more of his work here.

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