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Buffalo is in the process of changing over nearly 700 school zone speed limit signs

This is just the latest move that has been made in a saga of issues related to Buffalo's school zone camera program. Many lawmakers call the program a failure.

BUFFALO, N.Y. — We're working to sort out some confusion regarding the City of Buffalo's school speed zone camera program, which has had a bumpy ride ever since the program launched two years ago.

On Monday, we reported on how some of the speed limit signs in city school zones have been changed over. 

Now, we getting more clarification about what's happening. Tuesday afternoon, 2 On Your Side spoke by phone with Michael Finn, the commissioner of the Department of Public Works.

Crews are moving into a new phase of changing over every school speed limit sign across the city -- nearly 700 of them -- from 15 mph to 20 mph. 

But the city didn't put out any information ahead of time. We just happened to notice the speed limit change on Bailey Avenue. The DPW will go throughout the city from now until the start of the school year changing those signs over. 

Many city lawmakers, however, want the cameras to come down as well.

"This council repealed it, our desire is for those cameras to come down. Everyday those cameras are up is a reminder of a bad policy that the city has they should come down," said Buffalo Common Council Member David Rivera.

A couple months ago, the Buffalo Common Council voted stop the use of school speed zone cameras unless a school principal or a majority of council members wanted a camera on. That's why the cameras haven't come down, because technically they still could be used. 

Buffalo's Parking Commissioner Kevin Helfer says at this point, the only cameras that are on are on Bailey Avenue near EduKids Early Childhood Center. All other cameras have been turned off. 

City officials say the cameras don't have to come down until September 1.

In terms of costs to changeover the signs, Finn says there are very minimal costs. New signs aren't being put up, instead there are new stickers. 

But it is time consuming to do all this. And city workers are doing the work a couple months ahead of the start of school.  

All this is happening, as city lawmakers work with the city to get speed humps and speed readers where cameras are. 

Lawmakers feel that this is a better way to get people to slow down without issuing citations.

"No one has a specific date I know they continue to work on it, but as my colleague Majority Leader Rivera stated, we want to move this along as quickly as possible, especially as this new school year is approaching rather quickly," said Buffalo Common Council Member Rasheed Wyatt. 

We're still unsure how much it will actually cost to get speed readers and speed humps installed.

That's something council members say they're still working on.