By on July 18, 2011

Three Southern California cities are taking steps to rid themselves of red light cameras. In Westminster, the city council decided unanimously on Wednesday to ask voters to ban the use of red light cameras in a referendum scheduled for November 2012.

“We gave very clear instructions… to city managers that this red light camera system will not be discussed or considered to be installed in any part of our city,” Councilman Andy Quach said on Wednesday. “Tonight is basically a reiteration of that already existing policy…. The council has historically never liked anything that could be considered monitoring its citizens by Big Brother.”

As in the nearby city of Anaheim, Westminster has never used automated enforcement. Anaheim’s mayor, however, wanted the people to have a say and 73 percent of residents agreed that cameras should be banned. The proposed Westminster measure would make it extremely difficult for politicians to install cameras in the future.

“I don’t think any member of this council would consider installing red light cameras,” Westminster Mayor Pro Tem Tyler Diep said. “We’re more a freedom friendly city, so we’re certainly not going to go that route. The four of us may think cameras are bad for our drivers, bad for our residents… so that when the voters ban it completely, whether the four of us are here or not, no future council can bring it back unless there is a vote from the people.”

Over in San Bernardino County, the city council in Grand Terrace voted on Tuesday to issue a termination notice to Redflex Traffic Systems, the Australian company in charge of issuing automated tickets. The cameras would not come down until after the city’s contract expires on April 24, 2012 because the agreement contained no early termination clause.

“There was an expectation that citation revenue would cover the cost of the program and provide some additional revenue for the city, which never came to fruition,” City Manager Betsy Adams wrote in a memo to the council. “This coupled with the increased workload the program created for the finance department and the sheriff’s department is the fiscal reason for not extending the program.”

The city council in San Bernardino will meet tomorrow in closed session to discuss the lawsuit American Traffic Solutions (ATS) is expected to file against the city. In March, the council unanimously voted to pay $110,000 to get out of its contract with ATS before the 2014 expiration date. ATS is now demanding payment of $1.8 million.

Localities throughout the state have decided to drop photo ticketing, including Loma Linda and WhittierMoreno ValleyRocklinSan Carlos, Union City, Yucaipa and Costa Mesa. Berkeley, Burlingame, Cupertino, Compton, El Monte, Fairfield, Fresno, Fullerton, Indian Wells, Irvine, Maywood, Montclair, Paramount, Rancho Cucamonga, Redlands, RosevilleSan Jose (photo radar), Santa Fe Springs, Santa Maria, Santa Rosa, andUpland have also rejected their automated ticketing programs.

[Courtesy: Thenewspaper.com]

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4 Comments on “California: More Cities Dropping Red Light Cameras...”


  • avatar

    YEs, I’ve noticed that alot of red light cameras which threatened my daily commute are gone.

    There’s one nasty one up the block which is positioned behind an overpass. There are two lights at this point and you instinctively want to make the first one cause if you don’t you’ll wait nearly 3 ~4 minutes for the green. They used to get someone new there EVERY GODDAMNED HOUR. Now it’s gone, and I can comfortably do 80mph between the 1st, 2nd and final light so I can make it to the expressway without worrying about having to panic brake.

    Problem is, these damn cops are everywhere with their little P.O.S radar detectors.

  • avatar
    Contrarian

    So there’s actually some sanity somewhere in CA politics? Who knew?

  • avatar
    GS650G

    Eventually the locals get used to the cameras, the revenue falls off quick unless they can shorten the yellow lights. Since many cities got caught doing that (and were forced to issue refunds) they end up with an empty bag. In Ca the tickets can be several hundred dollars, so this is a good thing for the common folk who don’t make 10 million a year in the movie business.

    Speed cameras are another avenue, we need to get them shut off too.

  • avatar
    henrythegearhead

    The cities that still have cameras are changing the law, to increase the number of tickets.

    There is a bill in Sacramento, right now, which if not vetoed will allow California cities to reduce posted speeds by 5 mph, even on streets with a great safety record. The lower limits will allow them to shorten yellows. The shortening permitted by a 5 mph decrease in the speed will increase red light cam ticketing by at least 50%. (Four of the sponsoring cities have red light cams.) Worse, the shortening will increase severe accidents by 30 to 40%. (Source: “Development of Guidelines for Treating Red-Light Running,” Texas Transp. Inst. pg 2-20.)

    It is AB 529, and it is going to Gov. Brown for signature – or veto.

    Defeat AB 529! If you live in, work in, or visit California, phone Brown, at 916 445-2841, or email him via the form at gov.ca.gov , and ask him to veto. Also phone the AAA, and your union.

    To the pro-camera anti-car people and cities thinking of supporting this bill for the money more tickets will bring: Don’t be evil! Try to remember that this bill will increase severe accidents.

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