One small way that California is planning on getting out of its financial problems

Brett Decker, the editorial page editor at the Washington Times, tells me that there are a lot of studies indicating that these cameras actually increase accident rates -- people who know where these cameras are slow down suddenly and there are rear end crashes. From the Sacramento Bee:

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger is counting on lead-footed California drivers to help dig the state out of its latest budget hole.

Buried in the details of the governor's spending plan released Friday is a proposal to raise nearly $400 million by allowing cities and counties to install "automated speed enforcement systems," also known as speed cameras.

The devices could be attached to existing cameras that monitor red light violations, and would track speeders by license plate. The tickets would come in the mail.

Infractions would result in fines of $225 for going up to 15 miles an hour above the limit, and $325 for more than 15 mph. The state's share of the take, an estimated $337.9 million, would help pay for trial court operations and court security. Local governments would keep 15 percent, an estimated $59.6 million, of the total $397.5 million collected. . . .

"To the extent drivers choose to curb their tendencies to violate speeding laws, there would be significant benefit to public safety in the form of fewer accidents and injuries to drivers," the department said. . . .

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Blogger Harry Schell said...

I don't think the speed cameras have done anything but put another tax on drivers. Useless execpt to enhance revenue.

In the case of CA, this revenue enhancement, even if they get what they forecast, is minimal and will not solve CA's basic problem at the state and local level of too many govt employees being paid too much. Until sand unless that is solved, the state will continue to spiral downhill as revenue earners leave.

Red light camera systems, combined with shortening yellow light durations, have also increased revenues, and accidents, the inverse of the claimed safety improvement.

1/09/2010 7:02 PM  
Blogger Angie said...

Harry is right. There are an incredible number of documented cases of the city deliberately shortening the length of the yellow lights to increase revenue. It has nothing to do with safety, and everything with them trying to use us as their ATM machines.

1/10/2010 3:22 PM  

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