Red Light Cameras pay off

September 17th, 2008 by Ken

The City of Lacey registered 340 violations at its red light camera intersection of Sleater Kinney and Pacific Avenue during the month of August.  At $124 per violation that means $42,000 into the city coffers.

It costs the city $9600 to operate the camera system at just one intersection and that means that the city makes a profit each month.  That’s a far cry from the first full month in June when only about 170 violations were registered.

Lacey Police Chief Dusty Pierpoint said that road construction on Sleater Kinney during the summer apparently slowed traffic down.  But with the construction finished and the intersection fully opened, the red light runners are back.

The cameras also catch those who make a right turn without stopping.  Pierpoint said that his officers, who review each violation on video, makes an individual determination in each case.  “If they stopped, even briefly, we let it go,” Pierpoint said.  “But, if they don’t stop and continue with a right turn, they receive a violation.”

Only the Pacific Avenue lane has cameras.  Pierpoint would like to put cameras on the Sleater Kinney side and well as cameras in Hawks Prairie at Martin Way and Marvin Road.  But he’s being stopped by Tim Eyman.

Eyman’s initiative I-985 would, among other things, take away all profit from red light cameras and turn it over to the state for traffic mitigation.   Pierpoint is waiting until after the election to determine if he wants to put cameras at more intersections.

(A similar story ran last month in my newsletter.)

Posted in Government, Informational, The Real News

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