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City mulls fate of illegal stop signs

Providence, R.I. -- Officials in Providence, R.I., are weighing options to deal with 692 municipal stop signs recently discovered to be illegal.

Providence officials recently discovered 692 of the nearly 2,600 stop signs in the city were installed without approval from the City Council or the city traffic engineer, and a recent ordinance to legalize all of the signs failed by a 5-4 vote, The Providence Journal reported Wednesday.

Councilman Mario Aceto said several stop-sign violation tickets have been dismissed by the Municipal Court because the signs were not on the city's code book.

"We are violating our citizens' rights over and over again," said Council Vice President Terence Livingston, who works as a lawyer. "We ought to notify people coming to our Municipal Court."

City Solicitor Anthony Cipriano said he is working with officials to draft a new ordinance to legalize the signs.

"It would seem to be foolhardy to take these signs down if they had been up for a couple of years," Cipriano said. "It could impact the safety of the residents."

Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI).

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