Redflex Corruption

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Jim_H
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Redflex Corruption

Post by Jim_H » Nov 29 2009 12:53 pm

I got a ticket in the mail yesterday. Here is the "evidence" against me. If I were doing 79 in the 65 as claimed, I would have been in the trunk of the car in front of me. I am car #2 behind the truck. A car from Colorado is passing me, and he may have been going 79, but I don't know. If he was, it looks like I got his ticket.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HH3NTQrE12k

AZDPS and Redflex are clearly lying about the quality control they claim to do, and they have no problems sending a ticket to an innocent victim to help tighten the budget problem and fatten the corporate profits. If they looked at the videos as they claim to do, I never would have gotten this.

Something tells me I am not the first person to whom this has happened. Is anyone interested in starting a class action lawsuit against a company which gathers evidence for the state without a private investigators license, and has profit as its motive behind "law enforcement"?
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Apr 26 2017 7:42 am

Conspicuously absent is ANY mention of safety being a driving force..

Texas Judge Releases Secret Speed Camera Meeting Video
25 Apr 2017 01:10 AM PDT

The public on Monday received a rare glimpse at the closed-door discussions that take place when politicians work with private vendor to set up a speed camera program. Judge Jack Carter, assigned to the 114th Texas District Court, last week ordered release of videos taken during closed-session meetings of the Smith County Commissioners Court. The court agreed with local activist group Grassroots America We The People that the secretive photo radar planning sessions violated state law.

"After a thorough review of such agendas and recordings, the court finds that, as it relates to deliberations about American Traffic Solutions conducted by Smith County Commissioners Court on July 8, July 29 and August 12, 2014, said portions of the closed meetings were conducted in violation of the Government Code Section 551, Texas Open Meetings Act," Judge Carter ruled.

As a result of the group's complaint, the head of the commissioners court, Judge Joel P. Baker, was arrested last year. Ultimately, Baker had no choice but to admit that he violated the Texas Open Meetings Act and step down from his job. His first mistake was to call a meeting on July 8, 2014 and order everyone out of the room besides fellow commissioners and his "friends" from American Traffic Solutions (ATS).

"I want everyone on the court to have a comfort level with this before we really push it out there publicly," Baker said at the closed-door meeting. "I think it's best for today's purposes that we don't move forward with a public presentation... I don't think we want to go into open session and have the public presentation.

"Former Tyler Mayor Joey Seeber was in the June 2014 executive session along with ATS to discuss the company’s speed camera program. Seeber told the Tyler Paper in May 2015 that he acted as a facilitator between ATS and the Commissioners Court. He was a longtime friend of a member of ATS’s legal counsel and was asked to help make introductions between company and county leaders.

“I see it as more Big Brother,” Commissioner Terry Phillips said. “I’m struggling with it. I love the money — don’t get me wrong — I love me some money.

Commissioner Jeff Warr agreed.

“I may be on the selfish side because I’m kind of money-motivated by nature,” Warr said. “We will be looking at a lot of money — I mean a bunch.”

The speed cameras issue is especially sensitive in Texas because the state legislature banned photo radar ten years ago in response to the attempt by Rhome and Marble Falls to set up automated speed traps on their own authority. Baker decided on his own authority that the law banned a "municipality" from using speed cameras, but not a "county."

On August 12, 2014, Baker held another closed-door meeting where he argued ATS should receive a 50 percent cut of every ticket the Arizona-based firm was able to issue. In return, ATS would get to decide where the camera vans would be located.

"The thing that really did pique our interest when we first talked about it clearly was the revenue," Baker admitted at the private meeting. "If we do this, we're not having to pay for it, and it protects kids... The money -- I mean everybody looks at the bottom line. That's something we have to do. That is a great added bonus. They would not be here talking to us if it didn't make money."

That was enough to convince all four commissioners to vote in favor of the program. Baker had a signed and fully executed contract with ATS in his hands on January 28, 2015, but the program was stopped before any tickets were issued.

Even though Baker admitted he broke the law, the Texas attorney general's office was prohibited from releasing tapes of the secret meetings without a court order.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » May 02 2017 12:15 pm

Iowa Cities Lose Appeal Over Speed Camera Rules
Judge rules that the Iowa Department of Transportation has the authority to ban speed cameras from highways on safety grounds.

Cities in Iowa may no longer defy the state Department of Transportation's speed camera regulations under a ruling handed down last week.
Polk County Judge Scott D. Rosenberg rejected the attempts by Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Muscatine to avoid curbing their automated ticketing practices under rules adopted nearly four years ago.

The Iowa DOT did not ban the use of cameras. Instead, the agency set out principles for camera use that prioritized engineering solutions over revenue raising. (What a concept! - Cities don't like it though because it does not create a windfall) State officials reviewed accident reports and only ordered the removal of cameras that were causing an increase in accidents or that were, for example, clearly designed to trick motorists by being placed next to a speed limit change. The rules affected a third of the state's cameras, but Cedar Rapids, Des Moines and Muscatine refused to comply. Gatso, the Dutch company in charge of the cameras, kept on issuing tickets on Interstates 235 and 380.

The cities insist that they can do what they want because they have home rule authority, but Iowa DOT pointed out that the state, not local governments, are responsible for traffic safety on interstates highways. The court agreed with this assessment.

"Based on state law providing the IDOT with the authority to regulate safety on primary highways, the Iowa legislature has provided the IDOT with the authority to regulate automated traffic enforcement camera systems placed on primary highways," Judge Rosenberg wrote. "The IDOT has the power to apply safety regulations to automated traffic enforcement camera systems use on primary highways, which does not interfere with municipal police officers' ability to enforce speed regulations."

The court was not persuaded that removing cameras would create a safety hazard.

"It is possible that automated traffic enforcement camera systems will result in unfamiliar drivers braking too quickly or frequently, causing greater risk for accidents," Judge Rosenberg wrote.

Cedar Rapids spent most of its lobbying effort citing the importance of "slowing down" drivers on the Interstate 380 S-curve, but the court pointed out that while enforcement of traffic headed into the curve might be reasonable, the camera is placed after the "tricky" section of the road where accelerating back up to speed is "normal and reasonable." The court also deferred to the Iowa DOT's in rejecting evidence from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS), an organization that profits from speed camera use.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Jun 06 2017 2:45 pm

Grand Jury Hits Oxnard, California Over Short Yellow Times


Red light cameras in Oxnard, California have been exploiting illegally short yellow times, according to a report issued by the Ventura County Grand Jury last week. The report documented the engineering shortcomings as just one of several examples of mismanagement in one of the Golden State's oldest surviving photo ticketing programs.

The grand jury noted that Oxnard failed to increase the yellow times at red light camera locations over two years since the state ordered an increase. At Rose Avenue and Gonzales Road, the yellow is 4.6 seconds when it should be 5.0 seconds. At Saviers Road and Channel Island Boulevard as well as Victoria Avenue and Wooley Road, the yellow times are 0.2 seconds short. Fifth Street and Ventura Road is off by a tenth of a second -- enough to produce a big increase in the number of tickets issued. The grand jury's concern was primarily financial.

"The duration of the yellow light at four red light camera intersections, as reported by the city, is not in conformance with the California Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices," the jurors concluded. "Even small inaccuracies in yellow light durations pose a potential financial liability to the city as citations could be dismissed."

Last year, 4131 red light camera tickets worth $2 million were issued, but the city has still found a way to turn the program into a money loser. Oxnard's deal with Redflex Traffic Systems was designed to get around a state law banning per-ticket compensation with a "cost neutrality" arrangement. Oxnard pays its monthly share of the $500 photo tickets to the scandal-plagued Australian vendor up to a total of $30,500 per month, after which the city begins to profit. Instead, Redflex kept all of the city's share because monthly revenue ranged from $17,794 to $32,254 over the last two years.

Worse, the city failed to clarify in its deal what happens with the "shortfall" created by the cost neutrality cause. Since 2008, the average $7976 monthly shortfall added up to $806,460.

"The cost neutrality clause is vague and does not make it clear if the city is required to pay any accrued balance at the end of the contract period," the grand jury concluded. "If the city does not prevail in its interpretation of the clause, the city may be exposed to a significant financial liability... The fact that an $806,460 balance was allowed to accrue over nine years, despite multiple contract extensions, suggests the city has not employed proper oversight in regards to the red light camera program."
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Jun 08 2017 11:32 am

-
- This is what happens when you allow the fox to guard the hen house......

Maryland: Inspector General Confirms Short Yellow Times


More than one out of ten of Montgomery County, Maryland's intersections has a yellow warning time so short that they are in violation of state policies. That was the conclusion of the county's inspector general in a preliminary inquiry report made public on Wednesday. The official investigation followed a complaint from the Maryland Drivers Alliance, which last year noticed that the county had been issuing tickets at intersections where the yellow timing was just 2.9 seconds long, in violation of federal law. The short yellow problem was found to be more widespread than expected.

"According to the Montgomery County department of transportation, at the time of our review, 13 percent of the county-operated signals have a yellow signal duration of less than 3.5 seconds and need to be re-timed," county inspector general Edward L. Blansitt III wrote. "We did not test or verify the accuracy of the information provided by MCDOT."

The county operates 836 traffic signals, and it is required to abide by the State Highway Administration (SHA) policies at 547 of those locations owned by SHA. The state in 2003 required all yellow signals to be no less than 3.5 seconds in duration, but the county ignored the rule, claiming it had never been formally notified of the requirement, which must have "slipped through the cracks." County officials insisted that they did not know about the 3.5 second policy until 2015, but the inspector general noted another complaint it received claimed red light cameras were strategically placed at those locations with short yellows.

A fraction of a second difference in yellow time can have a significant influence on the number of red light camera citations issued. In most cases, a yellow shortened by one second can increase the number of tickets issued by 110 percent, according to TTI ).

"The intersection at Georgia Avenue at Seminary Road saw a major reduction in red light running violations for the first two months after they increased the yellow times compared to the same months last year," the Maryland Drivers Alliance's Ron Ely told TheNewspaper. "It would be sad if an apparent lackadaisical attitude in applying SHA standards established 14 years ago increased the risk to the safety of motorists and pedestrians." ("Yeah - but look at all the $$$ we raked in")

The inspector general urged county officials to be more diligent in abiding by the timing rules.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Jul 27 2017 11:13 am

Ohio Supreme Court Overturns Fake Ban On Speed Cameras

27 Jul 2017
Politicians hate to make the sort of choices that might alienate key constituencies.
In Ohio, lawmakers knew voters opposed speed cameras after the devices were rejected at the ballot box in eight cities. At the same time, state representatives and senators did not want to offend city politicians (heavens-to-Betsy) who depend on photo ticket revenue to balance the budget. The Ohio Supreme Court weighed in Wednesday by tossing out the General Assembly's 2014 attempt to have it both ways by passing legislation that was commonly reported as a "ban" on speed cameras, even though it still allowed cities to run as many speed cameras as they liked (huh?).

A majority of justices reasoned that a number of superficial limitations on the ability of municipalities to use speed cameras served no legitimate state purpose. The 2014 law imposed requirements similar to those set by statute in other states, such as requiring safety studies and public information campaigns prior to starting a camera program (a.k.a. 'bottom-up-accounting'). The law also prohibited tickets for cars photographed allegedly traveling 5 MPH or less over the limit in school zones.

What cities really objected to was the requirement that a live human police officer sit near a speed camera while it generates tickets. This increased the cost* of running the program, and the court majority found that to be unconstitutional because it does not serve an overriding statewide interest. (* Um... what about 'safety' ?- They don't even bother offering up the rhetoric about 'safety' any longer)

"As to whether [the 2014 law] serves an overriding statewide interest, the state contends that [it] represents a legislative compromise: it is not an outright ban on traffic cameras, but it establishes cameras as secondary enforcement tools so that the officers do not have to stop every violator," Justice Patrick F. Fischer wrote for the majority. "However, requiring an officer's presence at a traffic camera directly contradicts the purpose of a traffic camera -- to conserve police resources."
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Aug 08 2017 11:05 am

Um... just a thought..... How about spending some of that windfall on reducing the highest per-capita murder rate in the Country - After all...this is the Nation's Capitol! Then you at least claim that traffic cameras are about 'safety'.


DC Cops Pad Salary With Photo Radar Cash


Police officers in the nation's capital have been adding as much as $80,000 to their annual salaries with money generated from photo radar. The extra cash helps build good will among the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) members who are paid out of the $100 million in tickets that Washington, DC's cameras issued last year. (A system that robs Peter to pay Paul can always count on the support of Paul)

The full extent of the monetary incentive was in the spotlight last week as a police sergeant received the green light from a federal judge to pursue his racial discrimination lawsuit against the city. Sergeant Mark E. Robinson claims that even though 213 officers were allowed to pad their salaries by tens of thousands of dollars, he was cut out of the largess in December 2011. Sergeant Robinson poured fuel on the fire in 2013 when he came forward to blow the whistle on the Third Street Tunnel speed camera that racked up over $1.8 million in tickets using an improperly posted speed limit.

In 2008, Sergeant Robinson was the full-time supervisor on photo radar detail. Other officers were only allowed to take photo radar overtime by participating in a lottery system. Those winning a coveted slot in the program earned an average of 468 hours of overtime, paid at the time-and-a-half rate. Before he began raising issues about the way the program was being run, Sergeant Robinson clocked anywhere from 1500 to 2000 hours of photo radar overtime a year -- worth $80,000 annually. That all stopped in 2011, and Sergeant Robinson pointed out that "less qualified" white officers were being given photo radar overtime from 2014 to 2015, while he was denied the same opportunity.

The city argued that the speed camera unit was "civilianized" in 2011, and no full-time employees were dedicated to automated ticketing. The camera program is fully owned and operated by American Traffic Solutions (ATS), which took over from Affiliated Computer Services (ACS) in 2006. ACS created the system in which the private company paid the overtime salaries of officers who drove the fully automated mobile speed camera cars to the ticketing location. As reported in a Weekly Standard series, the duty is highly coveted because, "You come in, set it up, sit back, read a magazine."

"By 2014, MPD was utilizing some civilian technicians to deploy automated traffic devices under the supervision of sworn members," Sergeant Robinson testified in a deposition. "This was consistent with General Order OPS 303.10 which required a 'member' to issue a notice of infraction for a traffic violation in the District of Columbia. A 'member' is defined to include only a sworn officer."
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by flagscott » Aug 08 2017 11:22 am

hikeaz wrote:Um... just a thought..... How about spending some of that windfall on reducing the highest per-capita murder rate in the Country - After all...this is the Nation's Capitol! Then you at least claim that traffic cameras are about 'safety'.
Where did you hear that DC has the highest murder rate? It's not even close, and its murder rate has dropped a bunch over the last 20 years.

https://www.economist.com/blogs/graphic ... ly-chart-3
https://www.thetrace.org/2017/01/chicag ... y-america/

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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Aug 08 2017 11:24 am

flagscott wrote:
hikeaz wrote:Um... just a thought..... How about spending some of that windfall on reducing the highest per-capita murder rate in the Country - After all...this is the Nation's Capitol! Then you at least claim that traffic cameras are about 'safety'.
Where did you hear that DC has the highest murder rate? It's not even close, and its murder rate has dropped a bunch over the last 20 years.

https://www.economist.com/blogs/graphic ... ly-chart-3
https://www.thetrace.org/2017/01/chicag ... y-america/
Thanks so much! I still would not camp anywhere in the D.C.. :lol: It's not like it is a peaceful place...

Alarmed that you are not vocal about the miscarriage brought on us by the money-grabbers disguised as police & politicians (which is what this thread is about), but rather my miscalculation on a tertiary component. :-k


The District’s homicide rate spiked dramatically in 2015, and officials say there’s no single reason for the increase.
The Metropolitan Police Department reported 135 homicides in 2016, 167 in 2015 — (a 54 percent increase over 2014), despite overall crime being down 4 percent. There were 105 murders in 2014, 104 in 2013 and 88 in 2012."

To date (2017) the number is already 137, one more than last year (https://twitter.com/dchomicidecount?lang=en), and it's just barely August, so you can see that things are not improving there.

Not all homicides, of course are gun related, but in D.C about 75 % are.....This high homicide rate in spite of the draconian gun laws there:
Remember, from 1975 through August 2014 a citizen could not carry, whether open OR concealed in D.C., as there was not a CCW permit even available.
Unlike the criminals......Each legally-owned firearm must be registered with the police, the rules require that D.C. residents undergo an NCIC background check and submit to fingerprinting. The firearms registry photographs the applicant. Residents must take an online gun safety course. Residents must also declare at what address it will be kept. There is a 10-day waiting period from purchase of firearm to possession, and a 30-day period between purchases of successive handguns. Only 2 full loads of ammo may be carried (12 for most revolvers) and no more than 20 rounds regardless of the weapon type. Each firearm is registered to an individual only, meaning couples who wish to own firearms must purchase two separate firearms. It is unlawful for a civilian, non-law enforcement carry licensee to concealed carry a gun within 1000 feet of a public or private day care center, elementary school, vocational school, secondary school, college, junior college, or university, or any public swimming pool, playground, video arcade, or youth center. Really? That is almost a quarter mile!

As a result, there are but 40,000 legally-owned firearms among the entire District’s population of just over 630,000. I would offer that there may be at least one or two illegal firearms floating around DC.

Also, until a few weeks ago DC had a "show a good reason' clause in its newly-adopted CCW application - effectively they issued almost no CCW permits.
The police department said in September 2016 that 89 qualified applicants had been granted concealed carry permits and 374 qualified applicants had been denied. Guess ya gotta get murdered first to have a 'good reason'.

Amazing.... so close to where the Constitution is housed but no one in charge that can READ the dam thing.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by flagscott » Aug 08 2017 2:22 pm

Yawn--don't care. Get a little perspective. Homicide rates today in DC are down 75% compared to 1990. Nationally, it's down 50% compared to the peak. Violent crime and crime more generally continue to decrease, as they have been for 25+ years now. Murder rates have been rising in a few cities*--and people like you fixate on this as if it's the end of the world.

Like I said, get a little perspective.

*note: not saying that rising murder rates in cities is something we should ignore

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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Aug 08 2017 2:52 pm

flagscott wrote:Yawn--don't care. Get a little perspective. Homicide rates today in DC are down 75% compared to 1990. Nationally, it's down 50% compared to the peak. Violent crime and crime more generally continue to decrease, as they have been for 25+ years now. Murder rates have been rising in a few cities*--and people like you fixate on this as if it's the end of the world.

Like I said, get a little perspective.

*note: not saying that rising murder rates in cities is something we should ignore
Yep.... cannot ignore the real facts >>>>>> Looks like it may not be a 'few cities', as you perceive...

"The increase in murder was remarkably widespread. Of the 82 cities with populations over 250,000 in 2014 or 2015, 52 or 63+% experienced a rise in murder last year; murder fell in only 26. (Four cities, another 4.8%, stayed the same.)
Murder rose by double digits in 29 big cities last year while dropping by double digits in just four of them. Three cities (Indianapolis; Louisville, Kentucky, and Omaha, Nebraska) had more murders in 2015 than in any of the last 40 years.

https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/mu ... last-year/

Let's agree that after you counter this FBI data - we can let this thread get back on track (you know, Redflex, etc); what say you?
Attachments
murder rate increases 2015.png
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by Tough_Boots » Aug 08 2017 3:33 pm

Just when you think this forum topic can't get worse...
"there is no love where there is no bramble."
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by rcorfman » Aug 08 2017 4:23 pm

@Tough_Boots
There's always room for more corruption. ](*,)
Go find a LonelyCache

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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by Tough_Boots » Aug 08 2017 4:38 pm

rcorfman wrote:There's always room for more corruption.
Oh... Was I talking about the corruption?
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by azbackpackr » Aug 09 2017 4:16 am

Fingers in ears and humming! Hmmm, hmmm, hmmm!
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Aug 16 2017 5:18 pm

Maryland: Longer Yellow Times Slashed Red Light Violations
The fourth most profitable red light camera in Montomery County, Maryland issued 52 percent fewer tickets after the yellow time was raised.

Maryland's inspector general in June confirmed that local officials increased the amount of revenue generated by the county red light camera program by using illegally short yellow times . The Maryland Drivers Alliance revealed last week that the number of violations at Georgia Avenue and Seminary Road dropped in half as soon as the yellow was increased from 2.9 seconds to 3.5 seconds to meet the state's minimum requirement for a 35 MPH road.

The drivers rights group turned its attention to the intersection after a camera run by Xerox Corporation (now Conduent) issued a ticket to Peggy Lucero, a motorist who fought the accusation in court. The ensuing media attention forced the county to increase the yellow time to 3.5 seconds on the left turn approach in December 2016.

According to county records, the result was an immediate 52 percent drop in the number of violations at the intersection from January through May 2017 (longer yellow) compared to January through May 2016 (shorter yellow). A few miles north at Georgia Avenue and Norbeck Road, the yellow times did not change. Violation here stayed within two percent of what they were in 2016.

The violation data are a somewhat imprecise measure, since the yellow time was only increased on the left turn approach of the intersection in question. The Maryland Drivers Alliance has been trying to obtain more precise figures about violations and signal timing, but Montgomery County officials have refused to hand anything relevant over. An ongoing Maryland Public Information Act (MPIA) lawsuit is asking a circuit court judge to compel disclosure.

"Were the Montgomery County Police to release the detailed violation data which is in dispute in my MPIA case, I am confident it would prove a causal link beyond any doubt," Maryland Drivers Alliance's Ron Ely "Perhaps that is why they don't want me to have that data."

A fraction of a second difference in yellow time can have a significant influence on the number of red light camera citations issued. In most cases, a yellow shortened by one second can increase the number of tickets issued by 110 percent, according to TTI.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Sep 21 2017 8:39 am

California Town Sticks With Embattled Red Light Camera Vendor


The majority of California cities that have tried red light cameras have dropped them, but not Solana Beach. The San Diego suburb's city council skipped public discussion and unanimously voted to renew its photo ticketing deal with Redflex Traffic Systems. Experts reviewing the deal found it made little sense on a financial or safety basis.

"Based on our analysis, the city of Solana Beach's red light camera program appears to have had no positive effect on traffic safety in the city, even after more than a decade of enforcement and the issuance of over 25,000 tickets," Safer Streets LA executive director Jay Beeber explained. "Further, it appears that the cameras were installed in locations that did not have a prior red light running collision problem. While the implementation of this program was likely well intended by those who initiated it, the program has not achieved the intended results."

Beeber used the official state accident database to find that the cameras did not reduce red light related accidents either citywide or at photo enforced locations, but rear end collisions did increase slightly at camera intersections. Others took issue with the city's decision to pay Redflex far more than nearby cities for their red light camera contract.

"Your neighbor Del Mar pays $1578 per month for each of their cameras while you are being asked to continue paying $2386 -- 51 percent more," the editor of HighwayRobbery.net pointed out in an email to the city council recommending engineering improvements instead of cameras.

More than half of the $500 tickets that Redflex issues in Solana Beach go to motorists who make rolling right turns. Beeber's analysis found that the California stops rarely cause accidents. At the intersection of Solana Hills Drive and Lomas Santa Fe Drive, nearly all the tickets went to turning drivers, yet not one accident in the city since 2001 can be attributed to drivers turning right on red.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Oct 12 2017 11:26 am

SeaTac, Washington Dumps Red Light Cameras
12 Oct 2017
City leaders in SeaTac, Washington were worried about doing business with Redflex Traffic Systems, a firm whose top executives were convicted of bribery. To avoid being associated with the Australian firm's "business practices," The staff decided to go through the process of drafting a new red light camera agreement with American Traffic Solutions (ATS) to keep the lucrative program going. When it came time to ratify the deal on Tuesday, however, the council surprised the staff by deciding 4 to 3 to reverse course and pull the plug on the cameras for good.

A number of objections were raised during Tuesday's council meeting, including the possibility of unintended consequences from issuing 81 percent to out-of-town drivers in the home of Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.

"We had a bunch of emails from people when they saw this on the agenda," councilman Rick Forschler explained. "We rely on people coming from somewhere else to SeaTac for our economic development. If we annoy them to the point that they don't want to come here and they go somewhere else to stay in hotels, it's potentially impacting our economic development."

Other members of the council were disturbed by the lack of rigorous record keeping that would allow an accurate evaluation of the cameras' value. Police Chief Lisa K. Mulligan responded by explaining that American Traffic Solutions (ATS) had offered to generate data and reports to support continued use of the photo ticketing program.

"They have staff that they can send up and sit there and look through every one of our reports and formats and actually call out those that might have been impacted by the traffic signal," she said. "So, yes, we have that ability if we choose to move forward [on the contract]."

Councilman Erin Sitterly was disturbed by that offer.

"There's some evidence that some data is being manipulated toward a pre-determined and desired outcome," she explained. "That disturbs me. When we talk about ATS come in to help us parse the data, it makes me wonder -- we have a company that's trying to stay in business, after all."

Gotta like THIS guy, actually doing his homework! :app: Councilman Peter Kwon spent forty hours personally reviewing the best available data on the program's performance and was disturbed by what he found.

"Over the last seven years it actually shows collisions have increased at the intersections where the cameras are located," city councilman Peter Kwon said. "I don't mean they've increased because traffic has increased. Collisions in relation to total traffic flow have increased -- the collision rate has increased, which goes against what red light cameras are supposed to do."


A recent poll of SeaTac residents cited by the council found 65 percent opposed the use of automated ticketing machines.
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by hikeaz » Jan 09 2018 4:53 pm

Texas: Guilty Plea In School Bus Camera Bribery Scam

Just two days after Christmas, real estate broker Slater Washburn Swartwood Sr. admitted his involvement in a multimillion-dollar bribery scam involving school bus ticket camera firm Force Multiplier Solutions and the Dallas County Schools (DCS). After tendering a guilty plea to the US District Court for the Northern District of Texas, Swartwood faces up to five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine for conspiracy to commit money laundering.

At the heart of the bribery scandal is the 25 year contract between the Dallas County Schools and Force Multiplier Solutions to provide automated ticketing cameras for school buses. The deal promised to bring millions to the school board, but the cameras fell far short of generating the expected windfall. The company's primary competitor, Redflex Traffic Systems of Australia, itself caught in a bribery scandal, also found profitability far more difficult to achieve. The difference is that Force Multiplier Solutions collected $70 million while the school system fell into massive debt as a result of the program.

The real motive for the school bus camera's loudest advocates proved to be personal gain. Ostensibly to make up for the bus camera program's financial losses, the school board turned to a real estate deal with Swartwood, a longtime associate of Force Multiplier Solutions CEO Robert Leonard. The deal would provide $25 million in up-front cash to cover mounting DCS losses, but over time DCS had to make $48 million in loan payments (Geez, guy's get a TITLE LOAN!) , a fact exposed by the investigative reporters at KXAS-TV. Federal investigators conducted raids to gather evidence to find out what was going on, and they concluded that crimes had been committed.

"The ongoing business relationship between Company A [Force Multiplier Solutions] and the state agency [DCS] generated millions of dollars in revenue for [Force Multiplier Solutions], a portion of which Person A [camera company CEO Robert Leonard] illegally kicked back to Person B [DCS superintendent Rick Sorrells] in return for further agreements and camera-equipment orders," assistant US attorney Andrew O. Wirmani wrote.

To help land the lucrative deal, Swartwood, his family members and Leonard poured thousands in cash into the campaign coffers of school board members. DCS Board President Larry Duncan, for example, pocketed nearly a quarter million in campaign cash.

Swartwood admitted that he used shell companies to funnel $2 million in cash from Leonard to Sorrells. Swartwood attempted to conceal the payments by creating fake loans that Sorrells was never expected to pay back.

The Dallas City Council last week began reviewing its options after 58 percent of voters in November decided to shut down Dallas County Schools. The city council finds itself in a tough spot since it voted in 2015 to extend the bus camera contract through the year 2040 as a means of evading possible statewide legislation that could shut down the cameras.

"Company A [Force Multiplier Solutions], which was owned and controlled by Person A [Robert Leonard], sold cameras and related services for school buses," assistant US attorney Andrew O. Wirmani wrote. "[Force Multiplier Solutions] entered into various contracts and a licensing agreement with a Texas state agency [DCS] acting through its superintendent, Person B [Rick Sorrells]. Under these contracts and the licensing agreement, the state agency purchased millions of dollars of camera equipment from [Force Multiplier Solutions]."

All of these contracts, agreements, and purchase orders were entered into by [Leonard] and [Sorrells] on behalf of their respective organizations.

Swartwood's arraignment has not been scheduled, nor have other indictments in the case been announced.
kurt

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big_load
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by big_load » Jan 09 2018 6:08 pm

School Bus Cameras are definitely the latest scam. It's hard for anyone to say no, because who doesn't want to protect schoolchildren? But that's also why school bus cameras don't pay. I can't think of a traffic regulation that seems more universally respected than that regarding a stopped school bus. There just aren't enough violators for it to be a revenue opportunity.

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Jim_H
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Re: Redflex Corruption

Post by Jim_H » Jan 09 2018 8:59 pm

big_load wrote:
Jan 09 2018 6:08 pm
There just aren't enough violators for it to be a revenue opportunity.
Can we find another way to bilk citizens out of their money?
Nothing more enjoyable than a good hike out of town.

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