Madison County Cracks Down on Speeders

Posted: Oct 13, 2009 5:06 PM CDT Tuesday, October 13, 2009 6:06 PM EST Updated: Oct 13, 2009 5:10 PM CDT Tuesday, October 13, 2009 6:10 PM EST
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A Madison County neighborhood is taking a step toward fixing a big speeding problem.
Malvern of Madison is asking the county's Board of Supervisors to change the neighborhood's roads from private roads to public highways.
The change would open them up for sheriff's deputies to write tickets for the traffic violations some people say are a threat to safety.
Right now, if Madison County law enforcement sees a driver speeding or rolling through a stop sign, their hands are tied.
"Although law enforcement can come into the subdivision, if they see a moving violation they can't issue a traffic ticket," says Malvern Homeowners' Association treasurer Ed Johnson.
Johnson says safety is one reason they want the roads to become highways.
"Of course they're all (the roads) paved, but there are ditch section streets. There's no sidewalks. We do have people that walk, kids that ride bikes, school buses. So yes, we're concerned about safety." he says.
The Board of Supervisors will either send it to a public hearing, or just say no altogether.
"There's a state law that allows a locality to adopt an ordinance designating certain private streets as public highways for law enforcement purposes. And they can do that in subdivisions that have 100 or more lots," says County Administrator Lisa Robertson.
With more than 200 lots, Malvern is the largest subdivision in Madison County. Ed Johnson says he and his neighbors just want the same kind of law enforcement patrols that other roads in the county get because they're tax-paying citizens of Madison too.
"We went to them in 2007, they asked us to do a number of things. We've done those things. So now we're going back and saying we're finished, and we're back again," Ed Johnson tells us.
And they're back with all new street signs, and the hope that the board will finally act on their behalf.
Lisa Robertson says the bigger public issue is whether or not the county should agree to accept Malvern's streets. To do that, she says, would imply a certain level of attention and patrol from the sheriff's office.
Reported by Tracy Clemons
Madison County Cracks Down on Speeders / See Bio