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RUPD's new program gives drivers repair vouchers for broken vehicle lights

The Rutgers University Police Department (RUPD) has launched a new program that will help drivers pay to repair broken lights on their vehicles.   – Photo by Hamza Azeem

Last week, the Rutgers University Police Department (RUPD) and the Lights On! grant program began a partnership to provide repair vouchers to motorists with broken lights on their vehicles, according to a University-wide email.

These vouchers, which will be given by RUPD patrol officers during traffic stops, can be used at certain participating repair shops and will cover up to $250 in repair costs.

According to Title 39 of New Jersey law, all vehicles must have adequate lights on the front, side and back of their vehicle, or they are subject to receiving a fine.

At the Rutgers University Student Assembly (RUSA) public safety town hall last month, Kenneth Cop, chief of the RUPD, briefly spoke about this new initiative's significance.

He said if a driver can not afford to pay a fine for a broken light, the issue can end up in court or result in an arrest. This program seeks to avoid this issue and strengthen community relations.

"Instead of punishing drivers for broken lights, this initiative aims to turn a dreaded traffic stop into an opportunity to create positive interactions between community members and law enforcement," Cop said in the recent email. 

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