Riverhead Town's effort to slow down drivers hits speed bump

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RIVERHEAD -

The Town of Riverhead wants to lower the speed limit but can't.

In smaller towns, like Riverhead, the state decides speed limits on larger roads, even if they are considered town roads. Towns can ask for a speed limit change, but first there has to be a study. Riverhead officials call that a waste of time.

Riverhead Councilwoman Jodi Giglio says the town knows the needs of its people and trouble areas where a lower speed limit would be beneficial.

Many people, especially visitors of the North Fork, use Edwards Avenue in Calverton as a shortcut between the Long Island Expressway and Sound Avenue. Many times, people are in a hurry. It's another road on which the town would like to lower the speed limit.

North Fork Assemblyman Tony Palumbo says he never envisions the state relinquishing all speed limit decisions to towns. But he was able to get a bill passed that gives Riverhead speed limit control on more -- but not all -- town roads. He says Riverhead is the only Long Island town with that power.

Town officials say the bill doesn't go far enough and that they'll push for greater control. They say speed is a factor in many of the 2,000 crashes every year in Riverhead.

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