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Letter to the editor

Speed bumps Editor, The Sun: Following are my thoughts as an individual; I am not speaking on behalf of the Midway City Council. While I was working at the Francisco's Farm Arts Festival this weekend, a Midway citizen came up to the information booth where I was sitting and asked me how I voted on the speed bumps that have recently been placed on Stephens Street. As a politician picking up on the fact that she was opposed to the bumps, my mind began processing all the different answers I could give so that, as a council member, I could make it seem that I had little say in the matter. Hearing my mother's voice and feeling my dad's tight grip on my shoulder from the past, I owned up to the fact that I had actually seconded the motion to install these vile bumps. The woman replied, "That's all I need to know." I went on to explain that the council was in total agreement with the speed bump installation. I surmised from that exchange that none of the present day council members would be getting her votes next Election Day. There are others who oppose these speed bumps. Personally, I don't like driving over them myself, but there is more to the story. Some have suggested that the city "Get the cops to sit out there and write citations and we wouldn't need the speed bumps." I can say from experience that this is merely a temporary solution that also has its downside. The speeding has been a problem for over 40 years. When I was on the police department, we would hide back on Brand Street and clock speeders with a stopwatch. Later we graduated to using radar to track speeders. Citations would be written for anyone traveling over 35 miles per hour in the 25 mile per hour zone. I remember on one occasion I sat for four hours and wrote 15 speeding citations, each driver traveling over 40 mph. I even cited a future Midway mayor, Tom Bozarth, who was 17 or 18 years old at the time. Other officers wrote a number of citations and you can believe that stirred up a hornet's nest. Both Midway citizens and visitors to Midway labeled the town a speed trap. Needless to say, the citations were cut back and drivers' speed on Stephens Street began to rise again. Forty years later, we still have the same problem, only a bit more complicated because we now have more children and pets playing along these streets. Even though the bumps are not a perfect solution, it is one I'm glad I voted for. I will give up a vote or even an elective office for a person's life any day. Hopefully a better solution can be found. But our action as a council, putting the speed bumps in, is an attempt to address a problem and not wait until someone is hurt or killed before something is done. John Wm. McDaniel III Midway

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