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Cortland County Considers Traffic Diversion Program

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Cortland County’s Judiciary & Public Safety committee meets tomorrow (November 11), where one of the items on their agenda will be a potential local law to establish a county-wide traffic diversion program.

The District Attorney has already presented to the legislature and the local municipalities on the creating such a program, which is designed to allow first time traffic ticket offenders a way to have their non-serious violations expunged.

Eligible motorists will be given 30 days to complete a six hour driver diversion course, approved by the state Department of Motor Vehicles, which may be completed in a traditional classroom setting or online.

A “Certificate of Completion” must then be sent to the District Attorney’s Office within the 30 days from acceptance into the program.

Eligible Offenses:

i. Speeding (VTL, § 1180 [a] not reasonable and prudent; or, § 1180 [e] failure to reduce speed) or wherein the motorist is charged with driving one to twenty miles per hour (1 – 20 mph) over the posted speed limit (VTL, §§ 1180 [b] or [d]),

ii. Speeding (VTL, § 1180 [f] speeding in construction zone; or, VTL, § 1180 [c] speeding in a school zone) or wherein the motorist is charged with driving one to fifteen miles per hour (1-15 mph) over the posted speed limit,

iii. Speeding (VTL, § 1180 [b] or [d]) wherein the motorist is charged with going twenty-one miles per hour or greater (21 mph <) over the posted speed limit,

iv. Speeding (VTL, § 1180 [c] speeding in a school zone; or, § 1180 [f] speeding in a construction zone) wherein the ticket was sixteen miles per hour or greater (16 mph <) over the posted speed limit,

v. All equipment violations are eligible, except for misdemeanors and overweight truck violations,

vi. All moving violations are eligible, except for Failure to Stop for a Stopped School Bus (VTL, § 1174),

vii. Failure to stop for a stopped school bus (VTL, § 1174) where there is no motor vehicle accident,

viii. All seat belt violations are eligible; and,

ix. Using a cell phone without a hands-free device (VTL, § 1225-c [2] [a]).

Ineligible Offences:

i. Any misdemeanor offense,

ii. VTL, §§ 600 (1) (a) and 600 (2) (a) – Leaving the scene of a property damage accident or leaving the scene of a personal injury accident,

iii. VTL, § 1174 – Passing a stopped school bus, where there is a motor vehicle accident,

iv. VTL, § 1192 – Driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs,

v. VTL, § 1212 – Reckless driving,

vi. VTL § 1225-c (2) (a) – Using a cell phone without a hands-free device where there is a motor vehicle accident; and,

vii. VTL, § 1225 (d) – Texting while driving.


If approved, this local law would take effect upon filing in the Office of the New York State Secretary of State, as provided by the New York Municipal Home Rule Law, § 27.

A public hearing on the program is set for the beginning of the full legislative session on November 21.

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