Traffic camera fines would drop to $50 under new bill

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Local,DC,Transportation,Liz Essley

Speed camera fines in D.C. would drop to $50 in new legislation before the D.C. Council. 

Ward Six Councilman Tommy Wells introduced a bill Tuesday that would make $50 the maximum fine for getting caught speeding by a traffic camera, as well as require that half of all revenue from cameras go toward improving road designs, traffic enforcement and traffic safety education. Fines for running red lights would stay the same, at $150.

The bill also would give drivers a 30-day warning period before issuing tickets that come with a price. It would also require the mayor to review speed limits to make sure they are appropriate. 

The bill comes after Wells and Ward Three Councilwoman Mary Cheh teamed up to lead a task force to examine whether traffic camera tickets needed to cost as much as $250 in the District, when similar tickets in Maryland are worth $40.

The cameras should help safety, not merely rake in cash, Wells said.

“Most people I talk to are convinced that our automated traffic enforcement cameras are mostly about raising revenue,” Wells said. “This must change – particularly as [the Metropolitan Police Department] prepares to expand the number of enforcement cameras and increase the types of moving violations that will be enforced with these cameras.”

lessley@washingtonexaminer.com

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Liz Essley

Staff Writer - Transportation
The Washington Examiner