Legislators consider reducing cost of red light camera tickets - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Legislators consider reducing cost of red light camera tickets

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  • Nearly 7,000 citations issued in Photo Red program

    Nearly 7,000 citations issued in Photo Red program

    The camera at the intersection of Francis and Division caught a Durham school bus running the light on December 7, 2008The camera at the intersection of Francis and Division caught a Durham school bus running the light on December 7, 2008
    SPOKANE, Wash. - Since the program's inception on November 1, 2008, Spokane's Photo Red system has issued a total of 6,935 citations and taken in more than $550,000.>>
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(A house bill aims to cut fines issued from red light cameras from
$124 to $25)


OLYMPIA, Wash. - At least two legislators in Washington State want to reduce the amount of money cities charge from automated traffic systems known as red light cameras.

The cities of Bellevue, Bremerton, Spokane and Seattle each charge $124, but a House Bill aims to cut that fine down to $25.  A similar Senate bill would cut the infraction to $42.

Since the program's inception in Spokane on November 1, 2008, Spokane's Photo Red system has issued a total of 6,935 citations as of January 19 and taken in more than $550,000.

In December 2009 alone, 563 citations were issued.

Out of the 1,498 citations that have gone to hearing in front of a commissioner, only 112 have been found not committed.

City administrators and camera contractors are watching the proposed legislation as the first public hearing on the matter is scheduled for Wednesday.

American Traffic Solutions, which operates the cameras in Spokane, said it was too early to comment on how the legislation could affect contracts in Washington State.

Marlene Feist, spokeswoman for the City of Spokane, said the cameras have never been considered a revenue generator for Spokane. She says the focus of the program has always been on reducing collisions on city streets.

The Spokane City Council mandated any revenue earned from the program be used for traffic reduction and safety improvements. Cutting the cost of the infraction could cut the amount the City collects for those measures.

"We plan on watching how the legislation progresses," Feist said.

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