New York City Council considering anti-idling bill that rewards snitches

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Michelle Charlesworth reports officials are considering a bill that would pay New Yorkers for video footage that results in fines for idling vehicles. (WABC)

The New York City Council is looking for bounty hunters.

Officials are considering a bill that would pay New Yorkers for video footage that results in fines for idling vehicles.

"You can't just idle in your car sir, are you aware, can't just keep running car, not supposed to," Eyewitness News reporter Michelle Charlesworth said.

Eyewitness News found a few idlers.

"Not sure if you know but you cannot idle for more than three minutes," Charlesworth said.

"I did not know that. Thank you for telling me," a motorist said.

City Council has put together a proposal to deputize New Yorkers to get smartphone video, catch idlers, and take home half the fines collected! You get to keep half the money!

One man, filmmaker George Pakenham, has taken on idlers with the film "Idle Threat".

"It is a bit of the carrot and stick," Pakenham.

He was at City Hall.

"The whole key is that you are getting regular citizens involved, and they are going to be able to document, videotape, and take home 50 percent of every fine," Pakenham said.

Since fines range from $350 to $2,000 that could mean a lot of money for what George made a film about. Council members Donovan Richards and Helen Rosenthal introduced the bill.

"DEP would be able to deputize New Yorkers to go out and document people just idling, have to shoot the whole thing as they sit there, must be all three minutes or one minute in a school zone," said Donovan Richards, a city council member.

This is just the first step at City Hall. The hearing comes up in September.

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