Leonia's nonresident vehicle ban hurts shops

Leonia, New Jersey, has a traffic problem. Too many commuters cut through at rush hour to the George Washington Bridge. To fix that, the town tried closing some streets to outside traffic. But that seems to have created a new issue. And some local business owners say it's hurting them.

Jenny Kim noticed the change right away. Normal customers from neighboring towns just stopped coming to her floral shop in downtown Leonia. They told her they didn't want to risk getting a ticket.

That new law shuts down 60 residential streets to nonresidents at rush hour. Violators face fines of $200 as part of the crackdown on motorists trying to cut through to the GWB.

Sonny Kim understands the city had to do something to stop the thousands of drivers clogging roads in the morning and night. But she said her laundry business is suffering and wants town leaders to consider loosening the rules.

According to reports, city officials sent a letter to residents urging them to shop at local stores while emphasizing that traffic to the businesses is allowed. Still, the city is already facing a lawsuit from at least one local resident.

Fox 5 reached out to the Leonia mayor. He did not return a request for comment.