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200 New Red-Light Cameras for Miami; 100 for Broward

Posted by FactReal on September 9, 2011

The Sun Sentinel reported on Wednesday:
  The number of red-light cameras in South Florida is about to expand exponentially.

Broward is poised to triple its total, adding 100 more of the electronic eyes, and giving out even more tickets to drivers who run red lights. Palm Beach County will add about 75 to its arsenal of 25. And Miami-Dade County will also triple its number to 200 more cameras.

The company that dominates the red-light camera business in Florida and across the country, American Traffic Solutions Inc. (ATS), is waiting for cities in all three counties to give the go-ahead for more, a proliferation expected to occur over the next year.

The first step comes later this month, when the Broward County Commission votes on ATS’s request to let it tap directly into the county’s traffic signal system, improving the accuracy and catching more red-light runners.

Then, the expansion and the signal tie-in would begin across the county.

One possible obstacle: Broward commissioners say that if the company is going to get access to the signals, the county should get a cut of the money they make, or at least a robust annual fee. […]

Ten of Broward’s 31 cities have red-light cameras or will have them soon. An 11th city is voting this month on a contract. There are no cameras in unincorporated Broward, but the county owns the signal system, operates and maintains it. […]

City officials in South Florida have had a love-hate relationship with the cameras.

Judges dropped many of the tickets that drivers challenged. Cities had to take officers off the streets to review video tapes for the citations. Costs were unexpectedly high; the return was unexpectedly low.

A few cities considered ditching their cameras; Hialeah did it in June.

ATS regional director in Florida Michael McAllister said those troubles are largely in the past.

The company won a big legal victory just a few weeks ago when Judge Steven P. DeLuca, the head Broward judge hearing drivers’ challenges, ruled that the camera tickets don’t violate drivers’ constitutional rights.

The locations for the 100 additional cameras in Broward aren’t determined yet, McAllister said.

The 50 existing cameras are watching intersections in Pembroke Pines, Sunrise, Davie, Margate, Fort Lauderdale, Hallandale Beach and Hollywood. Plantation and Tamarac have contracts but no cameras yet. West Park is considering cameras, with votes scheduled this month. Coral Springs has cameras with another company.

In Miami-Dade, 21 cities have them, including the city of Miami, which is set for a major expansion… In Palm Beach County, ATS cameras are watching drivers in Boynton Beach, West Palm Beach, Juno Beach and Palm Springs.

Red-Light Cameras: Locations, News, Laws, Opponents…

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