Ask SAM

Q: Does painting over graffiti without the approval of the property owner count as vandalism? How is this viewed or enforced by the Winston-Salem Police Department?

R.M.

Answer: “That would be vandalism as well,” said police spokesman Lt. Brian Dobey. “The WSPD does conduct follow-up investigations regarding these types of crimes and takes enforcement action when it is appropriate to do so.”

Q: Why is the speed limit on Silas Creek Parkway going toward Wake Forest only 45 miles an hour? People are going 60 through there on the weekends.

L.C.

Answer: “We get many comments concerning the speed limit on Silas Creek Parkway with some wanting it to be higher and others requesting it to be lower,” said J.P. Couch with the state Department of Transportation.

“We work with the city of Winston Salem when establishing speed limits on our roadway that are within the city limits.”

In the case of the stretch of road you are specifically referring to, “This section of Silas Creek Parkway has a higher concentration of private driveways, intersections to neighborhoods, and several ‘S’ curves,” Couch said.

“Based on this criteria, we established the 45 mph speed limit. As with any speed limit, we must rely on the motorists to ‘self police’ their speeds and drive according to the conditions present in order to obtain the safety we seek along our roadways. When this does not occur with regularity, we rely on law enforcement to monitor and cite the offending motorists.”

Q: Is it true that Democrats have tried to impeach every Republican president since Eisenhower except Gerald Ford?

S.B.

Answer: Actually, every president in the past 50 years except Ford and Jimmy Carter has faced calls for impeachment by members of Congress, though until now there have been only two significant attempts, directed at Richard Nixon (Republican) and Bill Clinton (Democrat).

Of those, Clinton was impeached. He was the second president in American history to have been impeached, the first being Andrew Johnson, a member of the National Union party, in 1867; both were acquitted.

Nixon resigned beforehand and was not impeached.

There have been individual members of opposition parties who introduced or discussed articles of impeachment against Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, George W. Bush (Republicans) and Barack Obama (Democrat), but those suggestions were not widely accepted and attempts to start impeachment proceedings quickly failed in all those cases.

Impeachment is a process that is used to charge a public official for misconduct, but it is not the trial itself. The process is initiated by the House of Representatives, and if passed, the Articles of Impeachment would then be considered by the Senate, with the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court presiding over the trial.

The Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress has a thorough overview of the impeachment process at congressionalresearch.com/98-806/document.php.

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Write: Ask SAM, 418 N. Marshall St., Winston-Salem, NC 27101 

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