Bent­ley Awards $155,535 for North Alabama ‘Click It or Ticket’ cam­paign

Cherokee County Herald - - FRONT PAGE - From Re­ports

A record 91.4 per­cent of Alabami­ans buck­led up in 2010. To main­tain that high­way-safety trend in north Alabama, Gov. Robert Bent­ley has awarded grants to­tal­ing $155,535 to help two re­gional traf­fic safety of­fices co­or­di­nate spe­cial en­force­ment cam­paigns.

The grants will fund overtime pay for po­lice of­fi­cers and sher­iff’s deputies in 15 coun­ties. The North Alabama Traf­fic Safety Of­fice was awarded $82,520 and the Etowah County Com­mis­sion re­ceived $73,015 to sup­port the North­east Alabama Traf­fic Safety Of­fice.

In­creased pa­trols and seat belt check­points will be con­ducted in con­junc­tion with the na­tional “Click It or Ticket” cam­paign from May 23 to June 5 and at other peak travel pe­ri­ods dur­ing the year.

The North Alabama Safety Of­fice, based at North­west Shoals Com­mu­nity Col­lege, cov­ers Col­bert, Cull­man, Franklin, Laud­erdale, Lawrence, Lime­stone, Mar­ion, Mor­gan and Win­ston coun­ties.

Based in Gads­den, the North­east Alabama Traf­fic Safety Of­fice serves Chero­kee, DeKalb, Etowah, Jack­son, Madi­son and Mar­shall coun­ties.

“Strong en­force­ment and vis­i­ble pa­trols serve as strong re­minders to drive safely,” Bent­ley said. “I com­mend the ded­i­cated of­fi­cers across Alabama who save lives by work­ing long hours on pa­trol and at safety check­points.”

Since Alabama’s first “Click It or Ticket” cam­paign in 2000, the state’s seat-belt use rate has risen from 70.6 per­cent to the cur­rent rate of 91.4 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to ob­ser­va­tional sur­veys con­ducted by the Alabama Depart­ment of Pub­lic Health.

Dur­ing the 2010 “Click It or Ticket” cam­paign, law en­force­ment of­fi­cers across the state con­ducted 348 check­points and is­sued 31,610 warn­ings, ci­ta­tions and ar­rests, ac­cord­ing the Cen­ter for Ad­vanced Pub­lic Safety at the Univer­sity of Alabama.

The Alabama Depart­ment of Eco­nomic and Com­mu­nity Af­fairs is ad­min­is­ter­ing the grants from funds made avail­able to Alabama by the Na­tional High­way Traf­fic Safety Ad­min­is­tra­tion.

Bent­ley no­ti­fied J. Pa­trick Sims, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of Etowah County, and Dr. Humphrey Lee, pres­i­dent of North­west Shoals Com­mu­nity Col­lege, that the grants had been awarded.

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