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City of Rochester
201 4th Street SE
Rochester, MN  55904

Phone: 507-328-2900
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Rochester Police Department Joins Lights On! Community Program

Post Date:06/13/2019 2:47 PM

The Rochester Police Department (RPD) is pleased to announce a new community policing program rolling out this summer, called Lights On!

In partnership with Minnesota-based MicroGrants nonprofit organization, Lights On! is an innovative program that brings law enforcement and local auto service providers together to replace mechanical violation auto tickets with free repair vouchers. 

Through the program, when an RPD officer is engaging in a routine traffic stop involving a mechanical violation (e.g., burned out light bulb, broken light bulb), instead of issuing a ticket for the violation, the officer can provide a voucher for free bulb replacement at a participating local auto repair shop. RPD is pleased to partner with Rochester Motor Cars for this program, which includes the following entities:

  • Rochester Ford - 4900 US-52
  • Rochester Mazda - 2955 48th St NW
  • Rochester Toyota - 4365 Canal Pl SE
  • Rochester Car Clearance - 2980 7th St NW
  • Rochester Collision Center - 2828 Pennington Ct NW
  • Rochester Quick Lane on 2nd – 2009 2nd Street SW

“This is an innovative approach to policing that truly gets to the heart of protect and serve, creating trust and improving safety for everyone on our streets,” shared Dee Sabol, Executive Director of the Diversity Council.

Rochester Police Chief James Franklin states, “For some families, a broken taillight or turn signal can sometimes mean choosing between a minor auto repair and buying groceries.  A citation for these minor offenses can lead to further financial strain and will most likely lead to additional confrontations with law enforcement, and even possible vehicle impoundment.  This program gives our officers a useful tool to engage with drivers and offer a helpful solution, rather than a ticket or fine.”

“The Lights On! program is a way to build relationships between police departments and the communities they serve,” says Don Samuels, CEO of MicroGrants. “Instead of punishing drivers for broken lights, we can fix the mechanical issue and mitigate what often becomes a downward spiral for community members in need.”

The Lights On! program is community-driven, supported by community in-kind and financial donations.

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