Idling Parents and Idle Minds

Protect our children - Turn off your engine

Protect our children - Turn off your engine

From the NY News

Motorists who idle their engines by a school for more than a minute will risk a $100 fine under a City Council bill passed yesterday. The measure is aimed at curbing exhaust pollution that feeds the city’s asthma epidemic, backers say.

Opponents blasted the one-minute rule as another excuse to slap motorists with revenue-raising tickets. “I’ve seen school parents victimized,” City Councilman James Vacca (D-Bronx) said in voting against the bill.

“I’ve seen traffic agents waiting like locusts,” he said.

Councilman James Oddo (R-S.I.) voted for the bill, saying it might help control parents who swoop down on local schools twice daily to deliver or pick up their kids.

City law sets a three-minute idling limit at schools, but it’s enforced largely by the Department of Environmental Protection against diesel-fueled vehicles.

The new one-minute rule will cover idling by autos and trucks “adjacent to any public or nonpublic school providing instruction from pre-K through 12th grade.”

A companion bill, passed 40 to 6, gives ticketing authority for idling to the NYPD, Parks Department, Sanitation Department and the Department of Environmental Protection.

Mayor Bloomberg will sign both bills, a spokesman said.

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