Scottsdale accepts $50k grant to better enforce bike, pedestrian laws

Scottsdale Police Department patrols in the Old Town area. (Independent Newsmedia/Arianna Grainey)

The Governor’s Office of Highway Safety will provide Scottsdale with grant money, which the city will then use to further beef up its bicycle and pedestrian enforcement and education.

At its Tuesday, March 19 meeting, the Scottsdale City Council approved on consent the acceptance of up to $50,000 in grant funds and a budget transfer in the same amount.

The budget transfer will come from the Fiscal Year 2018-19 Future Grants Budget and/or the grant contingency budget to a newly-created cost center to “record the related grant activity.”

The Scottsdale Police Department says “the grant funds will allow the department to continue enhancing safety within the community by educating and removing impaired drivers that choose to drive on city roadways.”

Police will also use the funds to participate in DUI Task Force nights, have “Know Your Limit” details and better enforce the Alternative Transportation Program Safety details for Old Town Scottsdale.

City staff, via a report to council, say they have seen an increase in residents and tourists using bikes as a primary source of transportation. This has happened as a result of strict and increased driving under the influence enforcement, staff say.

Furthermore, staff has seen an increase in bike use in the entertainment district and surrounding communities, especially with the addition of bike rentals that can be picked up or dropped off anywhere.

The city also claims it saw traffic fatalities increase from 2017 to 2018 to include one bicycle fatality. It also says it saw a 200 percent increase in pedestrian fatalities in the same time frame.

News Services Reporter Josh Martinez can be contacted at jmartinez@newszap.com or at 623-445-2738

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