Politics

St. Petersburg To Do Away With Red Light Cameras

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File photo of a red light camera.  (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

File photo of a red light camera. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

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St. Petersburg, FL (CBS Tampa Bay) – If you live, work, or commute through St. Petersburg this is big news.

According to tbo.com, the St. Petersburg city council has voted 6-2 to end the controversial red-light camera program once fines are no longer covering the cost of the program, or by Sept. 30th, whichever is sooner.

Mayor Rick Kriseman had made the proposal to end the controversial program after it was revealed that citations had dropped and that the city could no longer cover the cost of the red light camera system.

The city council debated for two hours, letting concerned voices of opposition be heard before finally voting.

Council member Jim Kennedy, who originally suggested the use of the cameras said:

“I would be willing to pay extra for the cameras to be there for public safety. It’s not about income, it’s about public safety.”

While voices of opposition pointed out that the city had been using shorter yellow light cycles (the shorter lights led to more fines) than what was considered to be the norm for the state. The scandal brought about a mandate from state transportation authorities to lengthen the yellow light cycles in order to give drivers a fair chance to stop in time.

City council member Amy Foster said:

“I’m not comfortable with the way this program has been implemented or managed.”

The debate is not completely over though, as the mayor has also said that he wouldn’t rule out reviving the system if red-light running were to become a problem again.

Find out more about how the city will go about decommissioning the system, click here.



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