LORAIN, Ohio — Faced with an increase in violent crime and a rise in complaints about reckless driving in the city, Lorain city leaders are studying proposals to add speed enforcement cameras in the city, according to Mayor Jack Bradley.
"It would certainly help us to not have to dedicate more officers to traffic enforcement and officers that are out there addressing violent crime wouldn't have to worry about also doing traffic enforcement," said Bradley.
The mayor said city police are already stretched thin.
By adding electronic sets of eyes looking for speeders on the city's busiest roads, Bradley believes the cameras could serve as a force-multiplier for police.
But not everyone seems convinced the cameras are a good idea.
"Lorain is already a poor city," said resident Latasha Williams. "We already don't have enough to make our own means, so now they're trying to add-on another rate for us to pay something?"
Others are split as to whether the cameras are needed.
"Good and bad," said Lorain resident Kirdes Noble. "I've heard some cities are using those cameras just for more income, but you do catch people speeding down the street sometimes. So safety first I guess."
Bradley, who said he hasn't decided if the cameras are a good idea, denies the program would be an attempt at a money-grab by the city.
"We're not looking at this to help us bolster our general fund," said Bradley. "We're just using it to make our streets safer."
Something that, at least one driver said, is needed.
"It happens, sometimes you stop paying attention, stop thinking about how fast you're going and end up speeding," said Lorain resident Tito Ruiz. "But with that, I think it will keep that on people's minds."
Bradley stressed the city is still gathering information about the program.
The mayor hopes to have a proposal to present to city council in a couple of months.