The national “Click It or Ticket” campaign began May 21 and will continue through June 3, and Gov. Robert Bentley recently awarded nine grants, totaling $250,000 to help law enforcement officers make Alabama roadways safer during the Memorial Day holiday. The funds will cover overtime pay for police officers and sheriff’s deputies to increase the number of patrols on Alabama roads.
The Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs is administering the grants from the State Traffic Safety Trust Fund, an account that receives fines paid by individuals found guilty of driving without a license or with a suspended or revoked license. In Walker County, funds were distributed by the Birmingham Regional Highway Safety Office at Jefferson State Community College. Jasper and Parrish police departments reported receiving funding from the grant.
Jasper Police Captain Dennis Corbell said at least two extra cars will be on Jasper roadways until after Memorial Day.
“This is the first weekend of summer vacation, and we want area residents to know that we will be out in force,” Corbell said. “We are wanting to let the public know, because this isn’t something we are trying to hide. We will be out there doing our best to keep all our citizens safe. We also want people to know that if they are in violation of the law, they will be ticketed.”
Parrish Police Chief Nick Smith said his department also received grant funds to boost patrols.
“I don’t expect we’ll have a lot of problems, but we will have our full staff on patrol,” he said. “We want everyone to have a safe and happy holiday.”
Throughout the weekend, officers will also emphasize enforcement of the state’s seat belt laws by conducting safety checkpoints. Jasper and Parrish police said they would have roadblocks set up in various areas.
“The biggest thing we usually see is people driving without a license or driving without insurance,” Smith said. “We are letting people know that we are going to be out there looking for these things. It shouldn’t be a surprise when they get a ticket for them.”