In a new and unusual move in traffic enforcement, Belmont, Mass., police have told residents in advance when and where they will be looking for speeders, reports the Boston Globe. The department sends a weekly message to residents via the town’s e-mail list serve, website and local newspaper, citing which streets they will monitor for speeding, running red lights, and other traffic violations. Beginning last Thursday and through this Thursday, for example, they will focus on Francis Street, School Street, and Belmont Street, among others. Last week they patrolled White, Lexington, and Waverly streets .
While many people raise their eyebrows at this get-out-of-jail-free card for drivers looking to bend the rules, police say people are self-enforcing, which is better than paying an officer to wait on a road in a cruiser. More than 100 Belmont residents have written to the police after learning of the new policy, suggesting the streets they think should be on next week’s list for enforcement. Lieutenant Chris Donahue, who is in charge of traffic enforcement for Belmont, said he created the policy a month ago as a solution to budget cuts in his department. With just one traffic officer left, down from four, the police could not monitor every street they wanted to.