5/27/2006Charlotte, North Carolina Suspends Ticket Camera Program
Red light and speed cameras turned off in Charlotte, North Carolina in wake of court ruling.
The city of Charlotte, North Carolina yesterday suspended its red light camera and speed camera program in the wake of a May 16 state appeals court decision that ruled ninety percent of photo ticket proceeds had to be directed to the state school system, and not into the city's coffers and the pockets of a private vendor.
Charlotte had been paying Peek Traffic Inc. $35 out of every $50 red light citation to operate the cameras ($39 for speeding tickets). Under the court ruling, each ticket issued would cost the city $30-34. That is a price many North Carolina cities have already said they are unwilling to pay. Charlotte joins Greensboro, Greenville and High Point in shutting down their camera program.
Charlotte City Council will meet June 5 to determine whether it can permanently end the program in light of the long-term contract it signed with Peek. The city will also need to determine how to pay the $4.6 million in back payments now owed to Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools if the ruling is not appealed to the state supreme court.