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Manteca, Lathrop receive $110K for traffic enforcement
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Traffic backs up around the bend in the MID canal as Christmas shoppers and parents traveling to pick up their students after school recently faced traffic delays. It was because of road construction at the intersection of Claribel Road and Roselle Avenue just south of Riverbank. Travel has been regulated by flag men during weekdays recently as the intersection improvement, including stop lights and turn lanes construction, continues at that intersection. Ric McGinnis/The News

Local law enforcement agencies don’t necessarily want to write tickets, but they will do so if it means creating a safer environment for all motorists. 

And now they’ll have the funding necessary to ensure that goal is met. 

Last week both the Manteca Police Department and Lathrop Police Services received word that they were recipients of the California Office of Traffic Safety’s Traffic Education and Enforcement Grant. 

Manteca received $80,000 for the 2020 federal fiscal year, which runs from Oct. 1 through Sept. 20 of next year, while Lathrop will receive $30,000 to fund various activities intended to reduce death and injuries on California roadways. 

The money will be used for a variety of activities and programs including:

uDUI checkpoints held during strategic holiday periods in an attempt to promote safe driving habit and save lives. 

uSaturation patrols looking specifically for drunk or impaired drivers during strategic hours and holiday periods. 

uPatrols focusing on California’s hands-free cell phone law and other vehicle code violations – a combination of enforcement and education. 

uSeat belt enforcement and child safety seat enforcement patrols.

uServing warrants on multiple DUI offenders and creating “hot sheets” identifying repeat DUI offenders so that patrol officers can identify potential violators. 

And local law enforcement officials are ready to put the grant money to good use. 

“With additional funding provided by CA OTS, Manteca Police Department will have the opportunity to increase traffic enforcement efforts on Manteca streets,” Manteca Police Lt. Paul Carmona said in a statement. “A focus will be placed on DUI enforcement and arresting those driving a vehicle while impaired.”

Over the course of the last year, San Joaquin County agencies have taken a proactive approach to a number of common traffic issues – pooling traffic officers together for maximum enforcement patrols in a number of different cities. 

With the grant, individual departments will be able to step up efforts for both enforcement and education of motorists, something that officials believe will lead to safer conditions for everybody. 

“Our goal is to save lives and prevent injuries one community member contact at a time,” Lathrop Police Chief Ryan Biedermann said. 

To contact reporter Jason Campbell email or call 209.249.3544.