Albany, NY - November 1, 2016 - Governor Cuomo today announced $28.3 million in federal highway safety grants has been awarded to 550 programs throughout New York State to improve overall highway safety and reduce the number of fatalities and serious injuries resulting from motor vehicle crashes.
"This funding will strengthen our highway safety programs by providing resources for training, education and enforcement initiatives to benefit communities across New York," Governor Cuomo said. "By helping New Yorkers mitigate dangerous and reckless behavior behind the wheel, these programs will help improve highway safety, prevent avoidable tragedies and save lives."
The Governor’s Traffic Safety Committee is distributing the funding in the form of grants to state, local and not-for-profit agencies to support specific types of driver safety initiatives:
Police Traffic Service: Initiatives by law enforcement agencies to target dangerous driver behaviors. This includes participation in the national Click It or Ticket seat belt mobilization and other enforcement initiatives aimed at preventing speeding and aggressive driving.
Child Passenger Safety: Child passenger safety education, car seat checks, the distribution of seats, and setting up child seat fitting stations.
Highway Safety Grants: State, local and not-for-profit programs that cover additional traffic safety efforts that include education initiatives, drunk and drugged driving enforcement, traffic records improvements, trainings, crash reconstruction and railroad crossing safety.
A complete list of 2017 grant projects is available here. The funding was awarded to New York State by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Acting Governor's Traffic Safety Committee Chair and DMV Executive Deputy Commissioner Terri Egan said, "Strong enforcement, awareness and education are hallmarks of New York State’s highway safety program, which saves lives every day of the year. These grants announced by Governor Cuomo will assist law enforcement agencies with targeted enforcement initiatives while raising awareness of traffic safety issues in communities across New York. New York is a national leader in the field of highway safety and these grants are the foundation of these efforts."
Congressman Eliot Engel said, "Traffic crashes and fatalities are terribly tragic, but they are often preventable with the right investments in education and safety. Governor Cuomo’s allocation of federal highway safety grants to local municipalities will fund child passenger safety programming, improvements to dangerous roadways, and enhanced police enforcement of traffic laws in communities throughout Westchester County. I applaud the Governor for making this commitment to our motorists and pedestrians."
Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey said, "New Yorkers driving to work, dropping off their kids at school, or returning home after a long day have a right to safe roads. These grants demonstrate how smart federal investments support the efforts of local and state agencies to protect and serve our communities. As Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, I am proud to continue the fight to increase funding for these and other crucial programs that save lives and keep New Yorkers safe."
Congressman Brian Higgins said, "This federal funding will support various community-based law enforcement agencies and programs that promote, encourage and enforce safe roadways."
Congressman Sean Patrick Maloney said, "Rebuilding our crumbling infrastructure has long been one of my top priorities, and I want to thank Governor Cuomo for his commitment to improving safety along our states highways – especially in the Hudson Valley. I look forward to continuing my work alongside the Governor to secure key federal investments to allow the state to fund critical safety initiatives."
Congresswoman Elise Stefanik said, "This important funding will help improve safety on North Country roads, reducing instances of accidents and traffic related deaths. In Congress, I helped pass the first long-term transportation bill in over a decade that also included important roadway safety initiatives and gives local communities needed flexibility to improve our roads and bridges. We must continue to work together at the state, federal and local levels to ensure we keep North Country families safe."
Congressman Lee Zeldin said, "These grants will provide necessary resources for our law enforcement and local community to strengthen our infrastructure and improve transportation safety, and overall quality of life. As a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I will continue working closely with our state officials to address New York’s transportation and infrastructure needs."
The New York State Governor's Traffic Safety Committee coordinates traffic safety and awareness activities across New York. Comprised of 12 member agencies, the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee and its partners work together on traffic safety initiatives and enforcement in communities across New York.
Over the course of a number of years these highway safety grants have paid dividends across New York. This year, DMV and the Governor's Traffic Safety Committee announced that 92 percent of New Yorkers continue to buckle up and regularly use seat belts, which matches the previous all-time high set in New York State in 2015.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is one of 11 agencies within the U.S. Department of Transportation and is responsible for reducing deaths, injuries and economic losses resulting from motor vehicle crashes. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration sets and enforces safety performance standards for motor vehicles and equipment, as well as providing grants to State governments conduct effective highway safety programs.
More information about New York State’s highway safety programs is available here.