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Halifax officer earns statewide recognition for selt belt safety / December 14, 2017
Halifax Town Council on Tuesday night recognized a member of the Town’s Police force for his outstanding work promoting the use of seat belt and child safety seats.

Officer Malcom Bowen was honored as the winner of the 2017 Annual Seat Belt Leadership Award, presented to only two recipients statewide — one a local law enforcement officer, the other a Virginia State Trooper — by the DMV Virginia Highway Safety Office.

Bowen was recognized for going “above and beyond” the call of duty with the 2017 Click It or Ticket May Mobilization Campaign, which aims to increase seat belt and proper child safety seat usage through aggressive enforcement of seat belt laws and education and community outreach on the proper use of auto safety restraints.

The Click It or Ticket national campaign is carried out during the high travel periods of the Memorial Day weekend and the Thanksgiving holiday season.

Kimberly Burt, program manager for the state’s Transportation Safety Services, traveled from Richmond to Halifax on Tuesday to present the 2017 Annual Seat Belt Leadership award to Bowen, who received congratulations from council and Police Chief Stuart Comer.

“In a town of only 1,389 residents and 4.52 square miles, Officer Bowen as made a very crucial impact in promoting occupant safety,” the DMV safety office noted in announcing the award.

Later during the Tuesday night meeting, Comer told Council members that his department now is fully staffed with the addition of two new members, Officer Dwayne Martin and Officer Sebastian Roher. Comer said both officers have been working over the past several weeks, learning more about the town, its businesses and residents. Each will enter the police academy in January to complete their training.

In the only other item of business during the regular monthly session, Council members unanimously approved a resolution requesting that the Virginia Department of Transportation continue discussions with “We The People of Virginia, Inc.” on potential options for saving Clarkton Bridge.

The resolution calls on VDOT to work with We The People on a suitable outcome for Clarkton Bridge, which the highway department deems unsafe and says must come down. Negotiations between VDOT and We The People should be held in consultation with the State Historic Preservation Officer and other parties in compliance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act, which sets forth various approaches for evaluating and possibly saving historically significant structures.

We The People, a local non-profit headed by Town Council member Jack Dunavant, has expressed a willingness to accept ownership and title to Clarkton Bridge from VDOT, to be followed by plans to seek funding for its rehabilitation.

In asking that VDOT continue discussions and negotiations with We the People, the resolution also states that neither Halifax nor Charlotte County, connected at both ends of the bridge over the Staunton River, accepts title nor accepts liability, cost or other responsibilities for the structure.

Also Tuesday, Town Manager Carl Espy said he has received no new information from county officials about plans for the Courthouse Renovation Project. The Town is seeking to learn more about on-street ADA parking spaces which were changed from the northbound side of Blue Ridge Lane to the eastbound Edmunds Boulevard between Blue Ridge Lane and South Main Street.

Espy said he is concerned about the negative impact these changes may have on patrons of downtown businesses as well as the court system. Espy also said he has not received any more information about the changing of Edmunds Boulevard to a permanent one-way street.

He also noted that a traffic analysis conducted on Edmunds Boulevard by Hurt and Proffitt was not carried out on a day when all three courts were in session, and consequently the Town has insufficient information to show what might be needed to accommodate a true pattern of traffic and parking issues on the courthouse’s busiest days.

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That click it or ticket is nothing but a legal way for the government to steal money. And the cops get rewarded for this what a joke our government and legal system has become!

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