Skip to comments.Montana Legislature Considers Red Light Camera Ban
Posted on 02/17/2009 6:55:59 AM PST by TornadoAlley3
Montana state lawmaker seeks to outlaw red light cameras.
The Montana state House Transportation Committee yesterday held a hearing on legislation designed to thwart municipal attempts to install red light cameras. The city of Bozeman had hoped to have its automated ticketing machines operational by May, but state Representative Bill Nooney (R-Missoula) wants to cut the program off before it can begin.
"An automated enforcement system designed to detect traffic violations that is attached to a traffic control device may not be used to enforce traffic laws," House Bill 531 states.
The Bozeman City Commission voted 4-1 last October to enter into a multimillion dollar agreement with an Australian firm, Redflex Traffic Systems, to set up cameras at six intersections. Under the deal, Redflex would pay for the right to issue the $135 citations in the city's name. These tickets would go to drivers who make right-hand turns on red, slide through an icy intersection during the winter and who enter an intersection a fraction of a second after the light turns red.
After a number of independent studies began to show that the devices fail to deliver the promised safety benefit, some states moved to ban their use (view studies). Mississippi's state House voted nearly unanimously last week to ban photo ticketing. Alaska, Arkansas, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, Utah, West Virginia and Wisconsin banned automated citations either through judicial or legislative action. In other cases, the public has taken matters into its own hands. Cincinnatiand Steubenville, Ohio recently voted to ban speed and red light cameras. Between 1991 and 1997, voters also turned out in Batavia, Illinois; Peoria, Arizona and Anchorage, Alaska to reject photo radar.
Source: House Bill 531
sorry but I refuse any moving violations that is not given to me by an officer.
it might be my car, but it WASN’T ME. I will take them to court as a matter of principle.
I leave the keys available for hundreds, no thousands of my friends to use....so you CANT give me a moving violation.
Me personally, I don't have a problem with red light cameras provided the government doesn't pull tricks like change the length of the yellow light to half a second or other BS like that and there is an appeals mechanism in place (just like with any other cop-issued ticket). Some places do have legitimate problems with people running red lights and there simply are not enough cops to ticket everyone who insists on breaking the law.
There is so much room for abuse here it boggles the mind. As anyone who drives in the winter knows, there are times when it is not only unwise, but unsafe to attempt a sudden stop on an icy road.
I have a problem with red light cameras... it’s called the Fifth Amendment to the Constitution.
The government will always test their limits and when given an inch will always take the proverbial yard; particularly where money and power are involved. There was a time in this country when cars did not have seatbelts. Then seatbelts were offered as an option. At some point, government began to mandate that vehicles come with seatbelts installed. A few years later many states passed seatbelt laws as secondary offenses, i.e. "we'll only ticket you for not wearing a seat belt if we pull you over for something else." A few more years, and seatbelt non-compliance became a primary offense...now the Federal Government subsidizes their annual "click it or ticket" campaign.
Red light cameras at dangerous intersections may seem like a great idea at first, but the purpose is to desensitive people to the presence of cameras, and if you have any doubts about that, simply look at England as a bellwether.
The Fifth Amendment guarantees the right to run red lights?
You question is an example of willfull ignorance.
How is that different than local governments who use cops as revenue generators, like they did in New Rome, OH and in many other places? The end result is the same, it is only the method used that is different.
I know! I live and work in a place where such cameras are very common and I've never once gotten a red light camera ticket. I clearly have no idea what I am talking about.
Because a police officer has the ability to exercise discretion, and whether to ticket somebody or not. Likewise, abusive or overbearing police practices will raise the public's ire much more quickly than a battery of anonymous cameras. It's all about the incrementalism. If you put a "zero tolerance" cop on every corner, people will immediately get the perception that your in a police state. Put a camera on every corner and you'll hear nary a whimper.
If there is a true, legitimate public safety issue at say, a given intersection, targeted enforcement, increased penalties, and perhaps re-engineering of the intersection are in order...Cameras aren't going to solve anything other than the local politician's dilemma about what to say when constituents ask what they're doing about the problem.
Town Council commissioned a study from a local college to see "How much the red lights had improved things". College found a statistically insignificant change in the number of PI (Personal Injury) accidents, and a large *increase* in the nunmber of PD (Property Damage) accidents - likely from people jamming on brakes to avoid a ticket. So, in other words, the red light cameras not only did nothing to save lives, but put you at much higher risks for accidents. The city council's reponse to this? Throw the study out, and hire consultants (read: paid shills) to do the study all over again.
We finally got rid of the tickets on a technicality. The ticket was a $50 civil fine, camera company was keeping $35, and the city was skimming $15 off the top. *BY STATE LAW* - 90% of all civil fines are required to go, in some form, to the school system. So, instead of leaving the cameras in place, and making up whatever the difference was to the schools....the city opted to have the cameras turned off entirely. Thus proving that indeed, it *was* only about money after all.
Since local government use these systems for revenue source and not for traffic safety I have no problem with anyone that takes action to defeat the system. That is relatively easy to do. So in the long roun I could care less if they install this crap or not. Just a waste of money in the end.
Cameras at six intersections. Magazine capacity of a Remington 870 shotgun=six. Coincidence?
The right to face your accuser in court.
If it wasn’t so freaking cold up there, I might emigrate.
Anyway, it got real bad, company from Arizona that was installing cameras, started losing money in anchorage, city didn't want to pay the difference, then the people figured out the revenue scam and got upset. Mark Begich tried all he could to distance himslef from what he did , but didn't work. Cameras came done, Begich lost his office for a few years. I've hated Begich since then.
All America has to do is start shooting; out the cameras; the house of cards quickly falls. no joke.
The first pause in your sentence was telling...
This 10th amendment movement might be just the thing. No shots, but when everyone just refuses to comply with unconstitutional federal laws, the house of cards will not stand.