Backlash growing against red light cameras in cities

by Cornelius Nunev

Running a red light is an unsafe thing to do, and since red light cameras make it easy to make sure people are penalized appropriately, the devices seem a fantastic expense. There have been a number of cit-ies that have the red light cams, like Los Angeles, that are trying to get rid of red light cameras like a bad habit.

LA's program for red light cams is over and done with

The Los Angeles City Council is gridlocked over whether to continue the pilot program that put red light cameras at a few intersections, according to the Los Angeles Times. Even though only 32 intersections, of the over 4,000 in L.A., had the red light cams set up, some council members believe the red light cameras are very important to traffic safety. When individuals don't stop at an intersection or on a red light, the cams there will take a picture. The council didn't get the eighth vote needed to keep the measure while there was a 7 to 5 vote. The cams cost $1 million per year, and 45 percent of offenders don't pay their fines.

Getting rid of tickets

Red light camera tickets in Spokane Washington were recently thrown out by a Washington Superior Court judge. This was since the Arizona Business that administers the cameras was electronically signing the tickets. Tickets have to be signed in Washington by a law enforcement officer. As reported by the Seattle Times, Washington State residents are hostile towards the cams currently. Bills keep being introduced to stop the installation of red light cameras or discover ways to curb the instal-lation of them without popular vote. Citizens of Mukilteo, Wash., passed a resolution this year that required all cams be approved by public vote and then voted to get rid of the cameras. The Spokesman Review states that one former executive of one of the camera contract businesses, American Traffic Solu-tions, was going to sites for Washington state newspapers and leaving comments as a resident. The Herald eventually tracked him down which led to his suspension.

Fiscal gains considerable

Several individuals are sure there is only one motive for the cams. That would be the money they bring in. In Spokane, a lot of money comes in from the cams. They bring in $500,000. In the L.A. city council meeting, Sage Advisors showed up. This is the lobbying representatives for ATS which does the Los Angeles cams. After Houston residents voted to get the red light camera shut down after the Houston and ATS contract expired, ATS decided it needed to get $20 million from Houston, Texas.

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