An agreement between Homewood and East Hazel Crest intends to more strictly enforce state code for heavyweight trucks on main thoroughfares in the village.
The Homewood village board passed the accord Tuesday, Aug. 24.
In the agreement, police from East Hazel Crest will patrol certain portions of Homewood to survey for overweight vehicles as defined by Illinois vehicle code. East Hazel Crest has officers certified to cite violating trucks. Homewood police department would need to put officers through a 40-hour course and purchase both portable and stationary equipment to do the job itself.
Homewood Police Chief Denise McGrath said East Hazel Crest officers will patrol the areas in the course of their normal shifts.
"It just gives them the jurisdiction to perform those traffic stops if they see a vehicle that they believe is not in compliance with the weight requirement," McGrath said.
The areas outlined in the agreement include 175th Street from Halsted Street to Ashland Avenue, 175th Street from Governors Highway to Dixie Highway, Halsted Street from 175th Street to 183rd Street, Ridge Road from Halsted Street to Dixie Highway, Dixie Highway from 175th Street to Ridge Road, and Ashland Avenue from 175th Street to Ridge Road.Residents have complained for years on local social media pages about truck traffic on main streets, especially Ridge Road and 183rd Street, which are residential areas.
The villages will split revenue from resulting fines on trucks ticketed in Homewood equally. Village government estimates the fines will bring in about $50,000 annually.
"This is a very good agreement. I'd like to compliment Chief McGrath for executing this with Chief (Roy) Janich of East Hazel Crest — and her staff, as well," Mayor Richard Hofeld said. "We welcome the East Hazel Crest officers going after those overweight trucks."
Editor's note: This story was updated to reflect a shift in emphasis. Previous versions of this story mentioned a controversial proposed development of a fulfillment center at Calumet Country Club on 175th Street that could increase truck traffic in the area. Village officials said the proposed Calumet Country Club development was not a factor in the agreement, which is intended to address existing truck traffic problems throughout the village.