Police receive grant to help slow speeders

Published 12:00 am Monday, May 9, 2005

Drivers in Demopolis who do not pay attention to their rate of speed may have a big reminder in the future. The Demopolis Police Department is in the process of applying for a grant that would allow them to purchase speed trailers, which use a large digital display to show drivers how fast they are traveling.

Demopolis Police Officer Marty Hoven said the application process is coming along and hoped to be approved.

“It is in the works,” Hoven said. “We are eligible for the grant and we are in the application process.”

The grant is a Federal Law Enforcement Grant through the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance. Hoven said each year law enforcement agencies are given the grant to help them upgrade their services. If approved, the Demopolis Police Department plans to put speed trailers into operation.

Hoven said the trailers are an effective way to remind people to be more cautious of their driving.

“It is just a reminder for people to watch their speed and observe the speed limit,” Hoven said. “We have numerous target areas in the city we can put it. Any municipality is going to get complaints about speeding on the street. It we start getting complaints in an area instead of putting a police officer out there we can put the radar trailer out there and let it sit for a couple of days.”

The trailer does more than monitor speed. It also gives officers a better idea of when the speeders are most likely to come through a specific area.

“It will come back and give you a printout of traffic through there,” Hoven said. “It will tell you what time they went through, what speed they were going and how many cars per hour.”

The total grant is $15,856 and would be shared with the Marengo County Sheriff’s Department because they pick up more than 50 percent of the housing and prosecuting of criminals.

Because Demopolis handled the application process and paperwork they are also eligible for 10 percent of the initial amount. After this amount is removed the Demopolis police and Sheriff’s Department will split the remaining $14,279, which comes to $7,135 per agency.

Most importantly, there will be no matching funds needed for the grant.

Later in the council meeting a proclamation was made declaring May to be Dixie Youth Baseball Month. Dixie Youth is a league dedicated to instilling in youngsters a proper sense of valued that will have a favorable effect on their lives.

The goal of Dixie Youth is to help the youth develop their own skills, self-esteem, confidence in themselves and the ambition to become a leader as they grow into adulthood through the challenge of a competitive sport.

Through the years, many young people in Demopolis have benefited greatly from the strong Dixie Youth program in place. For this reason the council felt it was very important to observe the month to honor this program that has done so much for their youth.