Jaywalkers abound in Saugerties, says board

Terry Parisian had been in Dallas [Dallas Hot Wieners] for 45 minutes during a busy time of day. He said he saw pedestrians ignoring the traffic lights, crossing without looking. and nearly being run down by traffic. He told the Monday evening village board meeting that he had not seen a single policeman during that period. He asked police captain Stephen Filak whether the police scheduled patrols during the busy periods around lunchtime.

Filak said regular patrols were not scheduled for particular locations at specific times because the police don’t want people knowing when the police would be there and when they wouldn’t.be. However, one of the three cars on patrol during any shift is dedicated to the village, “unless there’s a major, major emergency,” he said.

“We were informed at our transportation meeting that the police had special money to patrol that particular corner this summer,” said special assignments officer Alex Wade. “What happened with that?”
The money to be provided through the grant program has not yet come through, Filak replied.

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Mayor William Murphy said it is frustrating to see a pedestrian push the button to change the light and then cross before the light actually changes. “So they get across and then you sit there for 30 seconds. I know 30 seconds is minimal, but …” Several other trustees chimed in to agree.

The traffic lights are poorly placed, said trustee Jeff Helmuth. They are placed right over the crosswalks, and are too high to easily visible to drivers or pedestrians. “Say you’ve just come out of the movie theater, and you want to turn left on Partition. You can’t see the lights; they’re up here,” Helmuth said, gesturing.

Filak said the situation was under the control of the state Department of Transportation, and not the local police.

There are 22 comments

  1. Helen Francello

    I can honestly say, my husband and I always wait for the pedestrian cross walk lights to indicate it’s safe to walk- many times we are looked at strangely because we are waiting! I agree with Mayor Murphy, it is very frustrating to see people crossing against the light. I’m not sure what Trustee Helmuth is trying to say- when you are driving down Main St. and want to turn left, you can’t see the light, or when you are walking? Personally, I think the lights are placed accurately, but what is new for us in the village, is the fact that you can turn left onto Partition while the light is still red coming down Main in the opposite direction. But, as we were taught when we were young, look both ways before you cross and use common sense. Still hard to get used to the pedestrian having the right of way, but, again, drive slowly in that area and please, BOTH drivers AND pedestrians, look! So many times the light has NOT been on indicating it is safe to cross and people walk right off the curb in front of a moving driver, completely oblivious to the car and then offer a not so polite gesture towards the driver. The world we live in…………….

  2. Just saying

    offering my opinion…

    Village trustee Terry Parisian said he saw pedestrians ignoring the traffic lights, crossing without looking, and nearly being run down by traffic. He said he did not see a single policeman during that period. Is it possible that the officer was on another call or perhaps patrolling other streets during that time? Aren’t we always told, “if you see something, say something?” Why didn’t Mr Parisian call the police if he saw violations of the law, why did he wait for a village board meeting to bring it up…Just saying..

  3. Just Braying

    If everybody with any sense KNEW a crossing guard cop was going to be on duty at a specific corner during certain hours, wouldn’t it make for a friendlier Saugerties? Better yet, village trustees are empowered to act as law enforcement officers, adjunctly, according to NY state law. Give the village trustees a traffic booth in the middle of the intersection, and they can oversee the coming and going of the multitudes, and set a precedence for the other 552 village municipalities of the state, all of which are not required to exist anyways, but are a blight upon the poor, disabled and forsaken lumpen proletariat…..

  4. Stanley Hess

    Our Police Budget is out of control and at an all time high. Our Parks and Recreation budget is unbelievably bloated. A private citizen has essentially co-opted Cantine Field for a Nominal fee 2 months every summer. And our local
    paper is writing stories about an intersection and jaywalkers while our village board literally debates a 30 second traffic delay. I don’t expect Pulitzer level journalism here. But maybe, just maybe, write a story that actually matters.

    1. Village Law Books of NYS

      Village municipalities are voluntary, not required to exist, are territories of towns only and not territories of a county.
      The village board of trustees at any time, with a simple majority vote, put a referendum on a ballot to dissolve the village without villagers having to first get a petition of signatures of the majority of the village voters and then have a referendum put on the ballet.
      If you think taxes should be lowered by dissolving the village of saugerties and giving all its liabilities and assets to the town, then you’re the man.

      1. Zacchaeus

        Except, you left out that, villages use far more of the services and protections, afforded by taxpaying citizens. Every day, business districts, use uber more of these things, then let’s say Saugerties/Woodstock Road, not to say the outskirts do not get a bone now and then, but the bulk of government spending would be in the towne center, not the township. Once a village is dissolved, then those far more expensive rates of village tax dollar usage would spread, and ultimately raise, every town homeowners taxes, for services and protections, that they might never use. It would be quite an unfair, tax distribution. A village, or business district uses my highway personnel, police and fire protection, more power, more health and human resources, more water, etc., etc., ad naseum. Always big issues when talking of dissolving an established village into a township. Oh, the folks in the village, would be happy, they would suffer, most likely between thirty and fifty percent tax reduction, all the while getting that bigger bite of the proverbial tax apple, in services and protections.

        1. Village Idiot's Cousin

          You missed the fact that those who live in a village pay less in town taxes than those who live in the town outside-the-village.

          1. The Taxman, yeah I'm the taxman and you're working for no one but me...

            Really what planet are you from? You had better check your fact’s, there VI’sC, and ask a Saugerties Village resident, or a Catskill Village resident, or a Hudson City resident, or a Kingston City resident, how much they pay in property taxes. Then ask those who live in the Township’s of Saugerties, Catskill, Greenport, or Ulster, the townships that, those villages are geographically located in, just for a sample, then get back to us, with fact and truth…. … In other words; you are mistaken, and you can not seriously think that, that statement could possibly be accurate, could you? Well I guess your name does say it all.

  5. Steven McCague

    If people don’t know how and when and where to cross the road, why is it expected that our police will be there to educate. That’s my money going toward stupid rich people, because that’s who it is that is hanging out on a weekday in the village while I am working to pay the village taxes.

  6. David Radovanovic

    It’s hard to think with all the other nonsense that goes on around here that you would waste time on this. I’m all for a safe pedestrian / vehicle experience, but ranting about pedestrians alone is missing the bigger picture. For starters, why we do nothing as dangerously non-compliant trailers use our Village as an end run around the scales?

  7. The Banshee Woman

    I have been here for 57 years, and everyday, every week, and every year, people in Saugerties have walked across Main Street, at every point along the main village, always. I believe, it is the narrowness of the street, and the “old Saugerties” feeling of its businesses, that make us feel comfortable simply crossing to our destinations. Parking is the main cause though, circling for a spot, then finding one across the street, from your destination, in the center of town, it would seem almost ludicrous, to walk thirty, or forty yards, out of our way down or up to a cross walk, wait, then cross only to walk all the way back, thirty or forty yards too within ten feet, of your parked car, where you started, which is directly across from where you were headed. It isn’t rocket science, however, it is one of the first, and most constant lessons, my Mother, and later, teachers, and all other adults taught me, look both ways before crossing the street, any street, and especially a busy street. And, that cars, truck, and buses “have the right of way”, because they are bigger, and will kill you, well that and the one about clean underwear, just in case you were hit. Even if law says you, as the pedestrian, has the right of way you do not, again common sense. These teachings became habit, and common practice, for my entire life. Please, let’s all start using our own heads, again, and start being responsible for our own selves, so we do not need micromanaging, control hungry, narcissist deciding for you, exceeding their authority over all of us free Americans, with basically a fascist style ambiguity. We are over regulating and over enforcing common sense, how about we make us all a little bit more accountable for our own actions, and that the majority of humans have the sense to not walk in front of vehicles coming up or down Main. What’s next, we all have to keep in step and cadence, as we cross, or we get summoned? My opinion, is this police chief is a control freak, and over exceeds his authority over those, that he works for, that is correct, we are his boss. How about a fifteen mile an hour speed limit through the center of town with posted officers or guard, during busy hours, too protect all those folks spending money, and enjoying your village, and let them cross where they want, you know like forever, and as it has always been. One death, because of human error, and judgement, by both driver and pedestrian, and like everything else in America, knee jerk, ludicrous, and foolish actions, to “protect” “Us”, because we might be stupid enough to walk in front of a dump truck, sorry for that person and family, but why must everyone have to follow dumb rules, by an over zealous police chief and force, because of one incident of human error. Hey Saugerties, aren’t the people the boss, here in America? Then why don’t we all do our job, and order our employee, (Sinagra), to cool it with his rules and regulations, like useless stop signs, where they are not, and never were needed, and have an open, and free Main Street, with pedestrian protection along its length, for those using Our businesses. No need for harassing them with “Jaywalking” in “Friendly” Saugerties. My final question is, did Terry Parisian, see anyone get hit, or hurt, did they cause traffic flow to ebb? What’s next, while walking in the crosswalks we all must have right arms extended, saluting the furor, I mean chief, as we all walk in cadence. Come on Saugerties, stop over regulating and harassing the common folk, and go catch criminals, illegal dumps, and dealers, that will keep you very busy, all the while freedom reigns supreme on Main Street.

    1. Southern Sawyer

      Well said Banshee, we should be responsible for ourselves. Why do we need an authority to tell us how to survive.
      Hold everyone accountable for their own actions and pay the price if they make a poor decision.

      I have a relative with a business in the village and have not even been there in the past few years due to horrible parking, afraid to be ticketed if I don’t stop for someone crossing the street, tractor trailers and mirror to mirror contact on Partition St..

  8. NYArtist

    Saugerties took away a bunch of handicapped parking on Main and Partition. This ensures that the handicapped will be jay walking because they cannot walk all the way to the corner just to cross with the light and then walk all the way back. Put our handicapped parking spots back on Main and Partition. Often, I had planned to shop or go to a restaurant and because there was no parking, I drove to Kingston, instead. We have a serious parking issue in Saugerties that no one is addressing…or should I say that the old boy’s club isn’t addressing. And if you own or work in a business, please do not use the parking spaces on the street. Use the parking lots. Thank you.

  9. Steven Sarg

    Being that Jaywalking is a major issue and citizens lives are at risk and the police are llimited in scheduling, why not call on VOLUNTEERS to be crossing guards during the busy hours. I’d be the first to step up and I’m sure others would be willing as well. The only provisions from the town would be safety vests and whistles. Who’s with me? Any other volunteers willing to join in helping to save a life?

  10. ak

    Protect and Serve…. Do your job schedule officers at peak times protect and serve. Ever since the merger the
    village business district seems to be neglected.

  11. Bart friedman

    I always think that people who post annonymously are unsure of their intellect and that the newspaper that allows it is fostering hysteria.

    1. Clark Kent, Reporter, and Jimmy Olsen, Cub-Reporter and Photojournalist

      Well, I guess, then, you would be mistaken, with that broad generalization, and labeling. I believe that that would make your, “intellectual” response a slant bigoted. And, quite frankly unconstitutionally unAmerican, by my individual point of view. The first amendment guarantees, that these protections, offered by the free press, for whistle blowers, and a righteous free voice and place to express it. By the way, it isn’t really anonymous, they know who we all are, as every post is properly vetted. “SAVE THE FREE PRESS!”

  12. JP

    It’s like speeding or going through a stop sign. You take your chances each and everytime if you do it, however, one day there will be a cop there. You can’t post a cop at every intersection, stop sign, or light. Impossible! Don’t really know what Mr Perisian wants. The police budget is high enough. Do we really need to add more cops around town just to watch if people are jaywalking? That doesn’t sound like good economics to me. The ones that get caught will pay. The ones not caught will probably pay sometime in the future. Maybe Mr. Parisian can get a group of volunteers together to write up jaywalkers if he’s worried about it.

  13. Amy Amanda "Triple 'A'" Allen, Reporter

    As my fellow reporters Clark and Jimmy so eloquently posted above, the Constitutions First Amendment, guarantees that protection, you know, because if it is controversial, or claims righteous judgement against this government or elected official, who wields the power, if he or she wishes, to retaliate against free citizens, as to keep them the freedom to speak openly, and anonymously, if they wish. And, also as stated above, is the fact that each post is fully vetted, and the free press, that is Saugerties Times, decided to follow the American Constitution, and the tenants of a free press, and affords it’s posters this Constitutional Right to share their ideas, and too say it innominate. Protect your right to a free press, before the New and improved “Big Lie” that is alive and well in the WH, and remember, Hitler called it “fake news” also, just saying…

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