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  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,284
    The ongoing saga corruption of our legislature to rob citizens blind continues, and will likely be halted when the citizens push back, as they surely will once pushed far enough.

    from: http://www.thenewspaper.com/news/25/2592.asp

    Insurance Industry Behind Push for Florida Red Light Cameras

    Potential for millions in profit drives insurance to bankroll Florida legislation to authorize red light cameras.

    The graduate of an insurance industry "boot camp" is behind efforts to legalize the use of red light cameras in Florida. State Representative Ron Reagan (R-Bradenton) twice attended the Insurance Campaign Institute, a special program designed to place insurance agents in positions of political power that is bankrolled by twenty insurance companies.

    "Essentially a political boot camp, the comprehensive political training program covers all facets of the campaign trail, from organization to grassroots strategies, fundraising, direct mail, advertising, media relations, public speaking, debate preparation, campaign research, and use of insurance community strength," the Independent Insurance Agents of America explained in a 2001 press release.

    Reagan credits his 2002 Florida House victory to the Insurance Campaign Institute. To repay his industry backers, Reagan introduced the Mark Wandall Traffic Safety Act, a measure giving cities the green light to install red light cameras. Although the bill is portrayed as a response to the tragic death of a constituent in 2003, Reagan's legislation is designed to create millions in new revenue for the insurance industry.

    In Arizona, California, Colorado and Illinois certain types of photo tickets carry license points. Insurance companies in turn raise the annual rates of drivers who have these points on their license. In effect, the photo tickets generate free money because the extra premium is charged without the insurance company providing any additional services in return. Nothing in Florida law prevents insurance companies from raising the rates on the recipients of photo tickets in the dozens of unauthorized red light camera programs that have recently popped up around the state.

    Reagan, 54, must give up his state House seat at the end of the next session due to term limits. Reagan has made passage of the Mark Wandall Traffic Safety Act a top priority for his last term in office.
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,284
    Funny how it is all about the money hiding under a garb of safety.

    from: http://www.zwire.com/site/news.cfm?newsid=20303592&BRD=2150&PAG=461&dept_id=3770- - 17&rfi=6

    Starke rethinking red light cameras
    By: Mark J. Crawford, Editor April 23, 2009

    Starke Police Chief Jeff Johnson and the city commission put the brakes on plans to put traffic light cameras at intersections in the city limits. Tuesday night, Johnson passed out state legislation currently making its way through Tallahassee committees that he said would undercut the city's ability to raise revenue through its recently approved traffic light ordinance.

    That ordinance allowed for traffic cameras to be installed at intersections and created the process by which the city could fine red light runners and retain most of the revenue from the $150 ticket. The city was in the process of negotiating a contract with a camera provider. Now all of that has been put on hold, at least through the end of the current legislative session so the city has time evaluate what if any action the state takes with regard to red light cameras. Johnson said the city jumped the gun, and he took partial responsibility, saying he was told to pursue cameras, and he did. "I don't think we thought long enough on this," he said.

    If the legislation he addressed is approved, the city isn't going to be able to accomplish its goal. "It's all going to be turned back over to the state," he said. According to Johnson, the city would only be able to retain three-fifths of the fine it levied, minus whatever it was paying the camera contractor, who would also be compensated about $30 per ticket. Johnson said in addition to safety, the city had intended to "help" people by issuing fines that did not impact their driving records.

    While the statute drafted for the state required traffic school for red light runners, it did not call for the assessment of points against a vehicle owner's license, a mark against their record or allow insurance companies to raise rates. Johnson cautioned, however, that could change as the legislation quickly advances. He said he didn't want cameras in place in the city only to have the state to issue legislation contrary to the city's goals.

    "Sure we can install these cameras, but you know what we've just done? We've just helped the state a whole lot," Johnson said. Johnson indicated the state has seen what cities and counties are doing and is out to get its share.

    Commissioner Travis Woods also said he supported issuing camera-based citations when it looked like the revenue generated would stay in the city and benefit local residents. "But if we're going to create revenue for them, no I don't want to do it. They can create their own," Woods said.


    Attorney Terry Brown said there is still no cost to the city for using camera technology to catch red light runners. The cameras would nevertheless serve as a deterrent, he argued, adding the city would still be collecting 60 percent of the revenue (minus, as Johnson pointed out, the fee for the camera company, which reduces the city's take to around 40 percent.) He didn't want to see the city to abandon the idea altogether, so the issue has been tabled temporarily.

    ©Bradford County Telegraph 2009
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Not as many "Wah Wah Wah constitutional rights Blah Blah Blah" crybabies in Canada.

    The City of Edmonton, Alberta to Be Canada’s Largest Photo-Enforcement Program

    SCOTTSDALE, Ariz.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Following an intensely competitive bidding process that evaluated four of the largest photo enforcement companies in North America, the City of Edmonton, Alberta, selected American Traffic Solutions (ATS) as its vendor for the expansion and upgrade of the city’s photo enforcement program. ATS replaces the current vendor, which has had the Edmonton contract since 1993.

    Edmonton operates one of the oldest and most comprehensive photo traffic safety programs in Canada. Over the next 10 years, the City of Edmonton is expected to purchase 125 mobile radar speed and Intersection Safety (red-light) cameras from ATS. The new systems will all be equipped with ATS’ Axsis™ TC-16MP technology. The new Axsis system features a 16-megapixel camera which provides 25 percent more resolution than ATS’ earlier camera systems. The Axsis system is also the industry’s most compact and least intrusive system from visual, operational and environmental perspectives.

    ATS, which serves more than 150 communities in North America with red-light and speed camera programs, has been improving public safety in Canadian communities for more than 10 years. Calgary has used ATS’ equipment and services since 1999. The Calgary program has demonstrated significant traffic safety results. A recent study by an independent consultant concluded that intersection safety cameras in Calgary have reduced right-angle collisions by almost 50 percent and reduced rear-end collisions by nearly 40 percent.

    ATS’ program in Calgary is currently Canada’s largest. When Edmonton’s expansion is completed, it will be the largest municipal photo safety enforcement program in Canada.

    “As part of an intensive evaluation and selection process, we reviewed the offerings of four experienced photo enforcement providers,” explained Sergeant Barb Clover of the Edmonton Police Service. “We chose ATS for several reasons. They offered the most technologically advanced camera systems and we’re confident ATS will enable Edmonton to accomplish a smooth transition from our current vendor and the older technology we are now using. ATS has extensive experience working with large North American cities like Edmonton. And, finally, we believe the ATS system will enable the Edmonton Police Service to meet our goal of protecting our citizens by reducing traffic-related violations, collisions and injuries.”

    “We are thrilled to have been selected by Edmonton and look forward to partnering with the city and its Police Service to deliver the best available technology that will help improve traffic safety on their city’s streets and intersections,” said James Tuton, president and CEO of ATS. “This was an extremely competitive process. ATS is very pleased that our new 16-megapixel integrated camera system was recognized and selected by a great city like Edmonton.”

    The new contract is a five-year agreement with a five-year renewal option. When fully implemented, the City of Edmonton will expand the current 24-camera program to a comprehensive safety and enforcement program with more than 125 camera systems.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    I suspect as public sector pension schemes start to collapse in coming years, the cash grabs masquerading under a lie of safety will become even more frequent as the irresponsible civil servants become desperate for revenues.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Reads like a North Korean press release. Nice.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    The insurance industry is yet another parasitic special interest group. No wonder it supports anything it can use as an excuse to raise rates.

    "Reagan credits his 2002 Florida House victory to the Insurance Campaign Institute"

    You get the laws you pay for, that's the American way.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    We already knew this, but:

    link title

    Already, there's a petition drive aimed at forcing a referendum that could overturn the camera program. And now, an enterprising blogger devoted to fighting against speed cameras (you know this is a savvy blogger because he snared a domain name--thenewspaper.com--that might have gone for some big money not that many years ago) has taken a look at the money Maryland legislators have raked in from businesses with a special interest in speed cams.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    He's not too savvy if he sat on that domain name. Unless he's waiting for the last surviving newspaper to buy it perhaps.

    Here's another for you:

    Short Yellow Lights Are Dangerous
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    I wonder if green light timing is manipulated for the cash grab.

    An intersection I drive through every work day has a left turn light that used to let about 8 cars through before it would change to a very short yellow. Now it only lets about 5 cars through, with the same short yellow. A good way to encourage people to "run" the light and increase their tax burden....ummm...I mean pay the price for disregarding safety.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    Not as many "Wah Wah Wah constitutional rights Blah Blah Blah" crybabies in Canada.

    Yeah, no guns, free wiretaps at the grocery stores, sign me up...

    Just one little thing...unless in all the headlines about GM tanking I missed something, but Canada, last I heard, is a autonomous sovereign country wrt the United States. This would perhaps allow one to infer that they could have a Constitution that may be different than that of the US.

    I also hear there is plenty of room in their booming economy for citizens from other nations that don't cherish and work to uphold their civil rights.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    It's not a civil right to be able to speed unimpeded. Which is the root reason for almost the entire "anti-photo-radar" movement.
  • vinnynyvinnyny Posts: 774
    Wrong again. Reasonable, thinking, people don't buy into your dogma: it's against the law therefore it is wrong. Some of us believe in principles that override simple statutes (especially when the primary purpose of those statutes is revenue production). Sometimes, the law is wrong and photo radar enforcement as currently employed in many places is a perfect example.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    There is a "REASON" it's against the law !!!

    IT'S DANGEROUS AND DEADLY !!!

    No one in 1920 sat around and said, "we need to make ridiculous and useless speed laws just to make drivers mad at the guvmint !!!"

    Smart traffic engineers and smart cops and smart legislators saw that speeding and high speed crashes = death, dismemberment and paraplegics.

    So the laws were put in to combat the lowest denominator - people who speed recklessly and do not care about the consequences.
  • vinnynyvinnyny Posts: 774
    So the laws were put in to combat the lowest denominator

    There's one thing we agree on. These laws really do combat the lowest common denominator--those drivers without the judgment to know when it is reasonable and prudent to drive at safe speeds that exceed the revenuers' capricious limits. (And please don't attempt that sorry argument that the speed limits are actually set in accordance with the safe capacity of the road because that standard went away with the Nixon administration--as in 55mph national speed limit).

    In a time when governments come right out and tell you that the purpose of the new cameras is to increase revenues in order to make up for budget shortfalls, any reasonable person drops the "it's against the law" mantra and questions the efficacy of such laws. Chandler, AZ has been completely ruined by these one-eyed bandits. Only the so-called "lowest common denominator" drives 35mph in a section of road that safely supports 50mph (especially at times when traffic is light or non-existent). Instead of "lowest common denominator", you might just call them lemmings or sheep.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    vinnyny says, "Instead of "lowest common denominator", you might just call them lemmings or sheep."

    No, those are two different groups of people.

    The people driving the speed limit ( like lawful citizens should ) are not the ones who are the reason we have speed limits.

    It's the excessive speeders who are the reason.

    If everyone drove the speed limit, then we would not need arbitrary limits.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    So if everyone conformed to arbitrary limits established by the least accountable segment of society, we wouldn't need arbitrary limits? Makes sense...
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Exactly.

    Speed limits are ONLY there for the SPEEDERS, not the people who drive the speed limits.

    If no one sped, then there would be no need for limits.

    See how that works out so nicely? :)
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,284
    Henceforth all automatic enforcement cameras should be fitted with machine guns, and instead of taking a picture, should just let loose a volley of bullets to kill the driver of the offending vehicle, plus any other occupants.

    This will ensure that the population of speeders (as well as those contagiously exposed to their illegal way of driving like their children and other family and friends) will be steadily reduced to the point where there are only law abiding speed limit observing people left and the survivors can all live happily ever after.

    After all, we MUST make everybody obey the law as the lobbyists and the corrupt politicians have written it for our safety and not for stealing our hard earned money since "so what if the company makes a profit" is the capitalist way and must be protected at all costs.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    You are not being stolen from when you get a photo radar or red light camera ticket and more than you are when you get a ticket from a human officer.

    You committed the offense, so the piper must be paid.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Who then determines the proper speed? The hooligan in the Corvette going 100 in a school zone, or the fuddy duddy in a hybrid going 53 in the left lane of a wide open interstate who then calls the cops on someone daring to go 70?

    Or maybe some civil servants who are appointed by someone who is appointed by someone who is appointed by someone who is appointed by someone who is appointed by someone who is appointed by someone who is appointed by someone who is elected?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Who makes Redflex and the other bunch of should-be-sent-to-the-gallows "entrepreneurs" "the piper"?

    If every offense required a "piper" to be paid, the US would have been nuked to dust eons ago.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Determining "who decides what the proper speed should be" is an issue separate from photo radar enforcement.

    I'm about to put something on here you have NEVER thought about, so pay attention:

    Even if ALL the speed limits were set by a vote of the people who drive on that specific road, there would STILL be speeders and there would STILL be the need for speed enforcement.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Don't dodge the question. Who determines it if there are no limits? You put out a theory, make it viable.

    " there would STILL be the need for speed enforcement."

    In certain areas - schools, poorly designed or otherwise problematic areas etc, yes. Everywhere 24/7/365, no.
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,284
    Read this slowly:

    What we have here is a classic stalemate of discussion between open shills for the self proclaimed pipers and the lawless hooligans who must be stopped before they destroy all civilized society.

    Any questions?
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    For your perusal:

    Statutory speed limits established by state legislators generally provide maximum speed limits by type of road (e.g., interstate highway, two-way undivided highway) and land use (urban or rural). For example, Minnesota law establishes statutory maximum speed limits of 10 mph in alleys, 30 mph in urban districts and rural residential districts, 65 mph on urban interstates, 70 mph on rural interstates, and 55 mph in locations other than those specified in the statutes.18 Statutory speed limits also can be established for special situations such as school zones. For example, California law establishes speed limits of 25 mph in school zones when children are present and on streets (other than state highways) adjacent to senior centers posted with "SENIOR" warning signs.19

    Where statutory limits are not appropriate for specific road or traffic conditions, modified speed limits or speed zones can be established by administrative action. Such limits generally are based on traffic engineering studies, which consider factors such as the design of the road (e.g., lane width, pavement type and condition, terrain, parking conditions), commercial and residential development, the number of driveways and intersecting streets, prevailing vehicle speeds, traffic volumes, and crash history.

    AZ Speed Limit determination

    MN Speed Limit determination

    Whatcom County
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,701
    >Who makes Redflex and the other bunch of should-be-sent-to-the-gallows "entrepreneurs" "the piper"?

    That would be $$$$$. The $$$$ that they pay to the political entities who let them ply their trade and the political entity tries to justify it by saying, "The accident rate went down at that intersection therefore the camera is stopping red light running." Of course people who know where the cameras are go about running the other lights nearby, but we couldn't worry about that because it would take a live policeman to stop them and he might find drugs, guns, DUIs, people wanted on warrants, etc., while stopping those cars. I actually witnessed 3 people run a red light a couple blocks between two cameras install by City of Dayton to collect money out-of-towners who don't know the cameras are there (they don't notice the signs put up because they are busy driving).

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Well, if "Mr. and Mrs. Out-Of-Towner" drives legally in their home state, they can figure out how to drive legally in any state they visit.

    Read the road signs, drive the speed limits, don't run yellow lights.

    It's not rocket science to avoid a ticket when on vacation.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,701
    When the camera companies shorten the yellow so that more people will be "caught" rolling across the mark after the red shows, that creates a problem. The pious attitudes don't work in the urban areas with traffic moving as it does. The locals don't slam on the brakes for the yellows and the out-of-towners better not do so or they get hit in the rear end.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Well, of course intentionally shortening yellows is a bad idea.

    That in itself does not condemn red light cameras as a technology, though.

    But you know what? I look behind me before stopping at a yellow light to make sure the person behind me is not accelerating to catch the light.

    Even more importantly, I look ahead a few blocks to see if I think I have a chance to "make" the light and I make a decision right then on whether to try to make it or to start slowing down ahead of time.

    It's not hard to plan ahead for lights.

    Sure, there are ALWAYS going to be those minority of situations where perfect planning does not help - that's why it's called "an accident."

    But with a little foresight, planning, and common sense, MOST accidents of that type are avoidable.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    I just see copied and pasted material, no answers.

    Who is in control of those who have assumed control?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    That's pretty much it. Municipalities, almost always HBS case studies in fiscal irresponsibility, see these companies as winning lottery tickets, and do all they can to let them in. It's all about the money, nothing about justice or actual safety. When you see cameras at random locations that have never been a problem, you know what's going on.

    Firing squads were invented for a lot of these people, who disguise personal profit in a cloak of "safety" and "laws".
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Who determines what is running a YELLOW light?

    Don't for a second try to deny that the revenuers seek to cash in on out of staters, no matter where they are.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Are you asking for MY OPINION, or do you want info from the people who do that sort of thing for a living?

    I gave you the latter.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    I didn't see any real answers there....some claims, but they don't seem to be reflected on how traffic moves on the road.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Running a yellow light has a simple definition in most states:

    If you enter the intersection when the light is yellow, and your rear bumper is not inside the imaginary square formed by the crosswalks or the edges of the curb before the light turns red, then you have usually violated the law, and a red light camera will snap you.

    Running a red light is just that - entering the intersection with your front bumper when the light is already red.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Always "questions questions questions" from some posters here.

    If any of you have any answers, let's hear them, or are we all just naturally inquisitive?

    If I were in the business of setting traffic laws or regulations, or establishing speed limits, then I would know the answers.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    You're defending the laws, so you must be able to explain how they are established and why they are just, yes?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    So then it's running a red, not a yellow.

    Sounds like more ways for Redflex cowards to increase their undeserved incomes.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    No, there are two offenses, although most times are treated the same by the law.

    Running a yellow is different than flat out running a red.

    People running a yellow are sometimes caught in circumstances they cannot avoid.

    Most people who run reds do it in full knowledge or by completely not paying attention.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Well, it's obvious why they are just. Public safety is a priority.

    Now, does that mean EVERY speed limit is correct, logical, and perfect? Of course not.

    But if they were as awful as some of us here make them out to be, people would be protesting in the streets.

    As to HOW they are established, it's in a variety of ways. I posted some of them, and there are a lot more ways out there.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Revenue streams are the priority.

    People in this day and age will protest very little - they are too busy worrying about the next day. This nation founded on revolution has betrayed its origins.

    I see claims of methodology, but it is difficult to embrace it when one actually drives on the roads.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Do you believe municipalities desperate for money manipulate light timing to make a few bucks (a few less once the camera operators get their undefendable share)?

    Should the issue of running a yellow simply be alleviated by a couple second delay between red and green? Of course, it might impact profits, which is the true motivator.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    Maybe to Redflex.

    But not to the average police department. Or City Council.

    Now, will a City council take revenue stream over just about any other priority than safety? Probably.

    But no City council or police department, ANYWHERE in the USA, sits around and says "safety be darned, we just want MONEY !!!"
  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Police and city councils, both beyond the reach of accountability, are all about the money. The police know keeping the money flowing in funds their own pay and perks. They aren't dumb.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    money does not take precedence over public safety.
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    fintail says, "Police and city councils, both beyond the reach of accountability, "

    What?

    Say What?

    Ever heard of ELECTIONS?
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,701
    >
    we just want MONEY !!!"

    Dayton, Ohio.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

  • fintailfintail Posts: 48,243
    Yeah, and liberty and justice for all is the law of the land.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    "Using an unapproved radar unit is a violation of federal law, the lawsuit said.

    Karen Finley, Redflex president and chief executive officer, in a letter dated shortly before the lawsuit was filed, told the Arizona Department of Public Safety the radar units were FCC compliant - although not yet FCC certified."

    Lawsuit challenges photo radar technology (Yourwestvalley.com)
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 23,701
    All this independent businesses selling services for traffic citations to local political entities reminds me of a bad era in policing from the past.

    In the 80s there was a push from retired law enforcement officers, sometimes having left law enforcement under a cloud, starting their businesses of suppling undercover people to help catch drug offenders. They would stretch anything and everything to twist things to get someone to try to sell them drugs. They would even lie. Surprise. And many local agencies would use these outside groups to do the law enforcement for them. I don't remember hearing about them as much in the 90s. The problem was the people whom they were able to entrap usually weren't the savvy professional drug folk that needed to be stopped; the people entrapped were the naive end users and minor sellers. But numbers were numbers and the police agencies always paraded their successes through the local newspaper.

    The red light camera businesses remind me of the same kind of folk.

    2015 Cruze 2LT, 2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT

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