Roundup: February 29, 2012

Each Wednesday, we’ll publish quick summaries of the articles from the last week on We’re doing this because these articles are often strongly connected to the issues that National Motorists Association members are interested in.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012
Voter Initiative Appealed to Washington Supreme Court
The private citizens in Longview, Washington who forced a vote on photo enforcement want the ballots that were cast last November to count. Although 59 percent approved an outright ban on automated ticketing machines, lower court rulings stripped the initiative of its force of law, leaving only one provision creating an advisory vote. On Monday, initiative sponsor Mike Wallin presented his case in a brief to the state supreme court.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Utah Moves to Ban DUI Roadblocks
Utah may soon become the thirteenth state to ban police from closing roads and highways for the purpose of conducting suspicionless searches of motorists. The state Senate began consideration yesterday of legislation that would outlaw roadblocks set up for the purpose of arresting those driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) and ticketing those with expired paperwork. The measure cleared the state House Thursday by a 41 to 33 vote.

Monday, February 27, 2012
California City Opens Red Light Camera Cold Case Squad
Many California motorists decide not to pay the near $500 red light camera tickets they receive in the mail. The programs, which are run by private contractors, lose even more revenue when the contractor is unable to positively identify the driver in a photograph, as required under California law. The city of Hayward is solving that problem by opening a photo enforcement cold-case bureau in the hopes of doubling the number of citations issued.

Sunday, February 26, 2012
Iowa, Germany, Italy: Speed Cameras Dented, Destroyed, Swiped
Speed cameras were hit, burned and swiped in Iowa, Germany and Italy.

Friday, February 24, 2012
Maryland Lawmakers May End Police Camera Ticket Review
Lawmakers in Maryland began consideration of a measure that would grant private companies the full authority to issue speed camera tickets without even a cursory review by a police officer. The Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee heard testimony Tuesday on Senate Bill 486, which deletes an existing provision of law that states a citation must be signed by a “duly authorized law enforcement officer” and replaces him with “an authorized person trained in speed monitoring system enforcement.” That effectively gives private contractors full control of deciding guilt.

Thursday, February 23, 2012
Missouri: Court Rules Red Light Cameras Unconstitutional
A Missouri circuit court issued a final judgment Friday finding the red light camera program in St. Louis violated the Constitution. Circuit Judge Mark H. Neill reconfirmed his finding from May that the city’s program was illegal because the state legislature has never authorized photo ticketing. St. Louis had asked Neill to reconsider and argued that charter cities did not need the legislature’s permission to use cameras. He did not buy their argument.

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