Montgomery County’s Policing Advisory Commission will conduct a virtual public forum on Monday to seek community feedback on the Montgomery County Police Department’s traffic enforcement.
In a news release, the Montgomery County Council invited the public to share live testimony or to submit written, audio or video testimony. Live testimony should be limited to three minutes and, if applicable, one speaker per organization. Written, audio and visual testimonies could be longer if needed.
The deadline to register to speak is 4 p.m. Monday.
According to the commission, county traffic enforcement does not meet “basic tests of effectiveness, efficiency, and equal enforcement,” which is why the organization wants a “change in mission, focus, and strategy” in MCPD’s traffic enforcement.
The commission, which the County Council established in 2019, had released a report in December 2021 that recommended measuring effectiveness by using traffic safety as a metric as opposed to the number of traffic stops; increasing patrols by adding officers to the Central Motors Unit; and ensuring the MCPD trains its officers to treat stopped drivers with courtesy and respect.
The commission wants to hear community members’ experiences with traffic enforcement in the county and recommendations for improvements. Some topics the commission hopes will be addressed include: what people think effective traffic enforcement should look like, suggestions on racially equitable enforcement, what police can do to make people view enforcement in a positive light, a potential yearly traffic enforcement report and the use of camera enforcement and data dashboards.
The commission aims to advise the council about policing issues as well as “recommend policies, programs, legislation or regulations with regards to policing.” It comprises 13 public voting members and two non-voting members: the police chief (or their designee) and the president of an employee organization.