Red Light Bill Hearing Postponed Amidst Controversy

Mar 20, 2014

The bill wants to put a stop to Red Light Cameras.
Credit Amir Syed/ Flickr

Discussion of a controversial bill disallowing red light cameras in Florida was postponed in its first Senate committee stop Thursday. Supporters and detractors sparred over the usefulness of the devices.

“Red light cameras save lives,” Ponce Inlet Chief of Police Frank Fabrizio says.

But Paul Henry, a lobbyist for the group Liberty First Network, believes the cameras aren’t changing driving behaviors – they’re just leading to more tickets being issued. “What we find is that Tampa claims this huge reduction, and when you look at it, they had 5,000 – 6,000 violations per month back in November [2012] and through the first part of [2013],” Henry says.

He says the real reason crashes have become less frequent is the state transportation department forced Tampa to add nearly half a second to yellow light times. After the addition, violations dropped below 3,000 citations per month, he says.