The City of Margate Votes Yes to Removing Red Light Cameras

RedLightCamera2

By: Sharon Aron Baron

The City of Margate will not be renewing their contract for their red light cameras after their contract expires in December according to Mayor Lesa Peerman.

“I didn’t see the safety issue, or accidents going down because of them…that was the whole idea, because of safety,” said Peerman. “If anything, I believe people are slamming on the brakes more.”

Two years ago, they discussed having the two cameras removed from their locations on at Atlantic and 441 and Margate Blvd and 441, but at the time, and due to a clause in the contract with American Traffic Solution, they would have paid a penalty.

Vice Mayor Joanne Simone

Vice Mayor Joanne Simone

According to Peerman, Vice Mayor Joanne Simone who wasn’t a supporter of the cameras, even before she was elected, asked the city manager bring forward data to Wednesday night’s meeting to see how they were performing.

City Manager Jerry A. Blough, provided details for the commission to review before their vote.

In a Six Month Study:

2011 –Crashes – 51  Violations 5165
2012 -Crashes – 38  Violations 4150
2013 – Crashes – 34  Violations 4142

Peerman not only didn’t see enough changes in crashes, or red light runners to justify having the cameras, but the staffing considerations for the city did not make them cost-effective.

The City needed to provide two full-time Community Service Aides to administer the daily operations of the red light camera program, one Police Supervisor and one Master Police Officer to handle the supervisor review and administrative responsibilities in addition to their daily assigned tasks.

They also needed additional personel from the Finance Department, the City Clerk’s Office, and from the City Attorney’s Office as well as a Judge Magistrate to hear court cases from those that contested their tickets.

Both Peerman and Simone along with Commissioner Tommy Ruzzano voted to end the contract in December. Commissioners Frank Talerico and Brian Donahue were against removing them.

The cameras will still be fully operational until December.

“I don’t run red light it’s never been an issue with me…good bad or indifferent,” said Peerman. “It was a tool to see if we could stop people from running red light. I don’t know if we did that much changing. People that are going to run red lights, are going to run red lights.”

About Sharon Aron Baron

Sharon Aron Baron Sharon Aron Baron is the Editor of Talk Media and writer for Tamarac Talk and Coral Springs Talk. Tamarac Talk was created in 2010 to provide News, Views and Entertainment for the residents of Tamarac and to give resident's a forum. We are not affiliated with the City of Tamarac. That's why this site can be occasionally opinionated and obviously open.

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  • srd275

    Read more on the RLC FRAUD including the Hospital RLC TRAP http://news.yahoo.com/blogs/oddnews/red-light-camera-nabs-drivers-rushing-to-the-er-225051449.html. Other articles on this: http://www.local10.com/news/redlight-violators-at-hospital-intersection-in-tamarac-ticketed/24739270 and http://www.clickorlando.com/news/woman-fined-for-running-red-light-at-hospital-er-entrance/-/1637132/24301358/-/13p7lrbz/-/index.html

    Read more on the RLC FRAUD:

    http://www.motorists.org
    http://www.banthecams.org
    camerafraud on Facebook

    Note on the “violations” would be better if they were broken down by right turns and straight thrus. Also on the straight thrus, how many were under 1 second.

    Just came out in St. Pete that a longer amber CUT VIOLATIONS BY HALF! http://www.wtsp.com/news/topstories/article/359142/250/Removing-red-light-cameras-in-St-Pete-safety-or-money Quote: “St. Petersburg’s southbound camera on 34th St. and 38th Ave. N. had its
    light extended. The result? An average 250 tickets a month dropped to
    less than HALF.”

    Note that Georgia requires 1 ADDED second at all RLC intersections, over there the longer amber law has forced a number of cities to drop RLC!

  • BNB

    If only Tamarac would do the same.

  • Paul_Henry1

    This illustrates what local officials should be doing- looking at actual numbers of things such as crashes, and then pulling the plug on the camera scheme.

    The closing comment sums it up. No camera on a pole will deter an inattentive or DUI driver that can’t see the red light. These are the drivers that run red lights several seconds to several minutes into the red and injure or kill others.

  • jcwconsult

    Then Tamarac enforces the camera for people having heart attacks and safely turning into the hospital on red. And, if you have the guts to challenge the ticket for a just cause of turning on red – Tamarac denies your motion to dismiss the ticket for good cause and rips you off for another $125 in “hearing fees” collected by a “hearing officer” paid by the city to deny as many motions to dismiss as possible to get as many $125 rip off fees as possible.
    It is immoral to deny these legitimate dismissals for cause, but it is profitable and ONLY profits count in Tamarac. Voters should remove every camera supporter in city government and replace them with honorable officials who will change the rules and the intent of the hearing process to one of justice — not greed.
    James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association