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Palm Coast Getting Fleeced of Red-Light Camera Dollars, Harming Local Economy

| November 1, 2013

The fleecing is on the rise. Click on the graph for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

The fleecing is on the rise: American Traffic Solutions (ATS) is the private, Arizona-based company that runs Palm Coast’s 43 traffic cameras. Click on the graph for larger view. (© FlaglerLive)

One of the most anticipated cases of the last few years–questioning the legality of red-light traffic cameras is scheduled for oral arguments before the Florida Supreme Court at 9 a.m. next Thursday (Nov. 7). Regardless of the outcome of the case, two things will not change: Palm Coast’s 43 red-light cameras will not go away. And Palm Coast will continue to get robbed of the majority of the revenue generated by the cameras, with the state and the private company running the cameras taking out of the local economy more than seven times the amounts coming into the city’s coffers.

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Despite the lopsided numbers, the cameras’ unpopularity with the public and their blighting effect on the city’s image, a majority of the Palm Coast City Council continues to defend the system.

In September, the cameras generated a total of $255,740 in fines, what would work out to an annual total of $3 million. Of the monthly total, the state took $131,555. American Traffic Solutions, the Arizona-based private company that runs the system for Palm Coast, took $94,085. Palm Coast was left with just $30,100, some of which goes toward administering the system and paying for the city’s magistrate, before whom drivers disputing red-light tickets may appear.

In sum, the local economy stands to lose $2.7 million a year. Residents pay federal and state taxes that also send far larger amounts out of the economy. The siphoning of red-light camera dollars out of the economy is distinctive in one particular way, however: it is being done by the city council’s choice, rather than by legal imposition (as with state and federal taxes). The city council in other words–which claims to make economic development a priority–is exclusively responsible for letting those dollars out of the local economy.

Only one city council member–Jason DeLoranzo–has been making that point at the council, as he did in early September, to no avail. “We’re sending $2.5 to $3 million out of our economy every year with these citations,” DeLorenzo said. “We’re sending more than half of it to the state and the rest to a company in Arizona. And maybe we’re doing good things with the money that we’re keeping here, but that’s a lot of money to lose from our economy every year.”

The city issued a report showing red-light revenue and breakdowns for the past 12 months. The report includes six months when fewer than 43 cameras were in place, and when the contract between ATS and Palm Coast was set up differently, so revenue amounts were much lower then. But even with the addition of four times as many cameras as when they were first installed in 2008, the city is making far less than it did back then—in part because state law changed, forcing cities to abide by strict standards of how much citations may cost and who gets what shares.

The new system, in place since a state law called the Mark Wandall Act went in effect in July 2010, lowered local governments’ take and produced new revenue for the state. The state by law gets $82 out of every $158 ticket. Palm Coast’s revenue tumbled—until it worked out a new contract with ATS, multiplying the number of cameras to make u0p for some of the lost revenue. That revenue did not start flowing in until April.

City Council member Dave Ferguson was curious at a meeting earlier this week about those revenue figures, which for Palm Coast went from around $7,000 a month previously to $30,100 monthly now. The reason: Palm Coast nets $700 per camera per month regardless. That works out to a guaranteed $361,000 a year.

Other council members, abetted by City Manager Jim Landon, were again inaccurate in one regard, however: they claimed that the city does not stand to make extra money, the more tickets are issued.

“Now we’re getting a flat amount per camera, whether it gives one ticket or 100,000 tickets,” Mayor Jon Netts said.

“It doesn’t matter how many citations are issued,” Landon said.

That’s not quite true. By contract, the city makes its flat $700 fee for every camera, then ATS takes the next $4,250 per camera (after the state’s share has been deducted). But any net revenue above that amount, when averaged out among all 43 cameras, goes to the city. For that to happen, the system would have to generate double the amount of tickets it’s generating now. That’s not likely at the moment. But Palm Coast is going on the assumption that the city will itself double in population in coming years. If the cameras stay in place (the contract with ATS does not run out until 2017), or if state law changes—as it has almost every year in cameras’ regard—to make citations easier to issue, Palm Coast would stand to cash in more.

None of those issues have anything to do with the case going before the Florida Supreme Court on Thursday. That case relates to the way cities like Palm Coast ran their spy cameras before July 2010, before the Mark Wandall Act went in effect, and before state law explicitly allowed local governments to use traffic cameras as traffic regulation devices.


Many drivers cited under the old system argued that the cameras were illegal, since state law did not allow them. Palm Coast and other governments got around the prohibition by classifying their cameras under code enforcement, rather than law enforcement. Drivers sued. Palm Coast, too, was sued. Cases were decided either way: some courts sided with local governments, arguing that state law did not pre-empt them from installing traffic cameras, other courts sided with drivers, arguing that state law did indeed pre-empt local governments. The signal decisions were a pro-camera opinion by the Third Circuit Court of Appeal, and an anti-camera decision by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeal. The Supreme Court will have the final word.

ATS has already settled innumerable lawsuits with plaintiffs, reimbursing a share of their tickets’ costs. ATS settled its part of the lawsuit against Palm Coast. Palm Coast chose not to settle, and therefore has a direct stake in the decision before the Supreme Court. But that decision will not affect tickets issued after July 2010—only tickets issued before the state law went in effect.

Council member Bill McGuire on Tuesday wanted to know specifically “the upside and the downside of that decision,” once rendered. Bill Reischmann, the city attorney, filled him in. The upside—for the city, not for drivers—is that if the Supreme Court sides with local governments, the case goes away, and the tickets issued before 2010 become a moot point. If the court sides with drivers, then the law suit against Palm Coast moves forward, and the city will likely have to issue reimbursements to drivers ticketed under the old system. Netts called that “the absolute worst-case scenario,” at least for the city.

Drivers may see it differently. But again: however the Supreme Court rules, there will be no changes to Palm Coast’s existing red-light cameras, at least until 2017. Or unless state law changes: in September, Sen. Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, filed a bill (SB 144) to abolish red-light cameras statewide. Similar legislative initiatives have failed in recent years.

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54 Responses for “Palm Coast Getting Fleeced of Red-Light Camera Dollars, Harming Local Economy”

  1. Kenneth MacKenzie says:

    Time to stop voting party, folks, and vote out the crooks and dummies. The math is easy: 3,000,000 out, 360,000 in. Only worth it to people who like spending your hard-earned money.

  2. BLONDIE says:

    THE CHART SHOW ME THAT THE LIGHTS ARE RIGGED WE PAY MORE IN GAS FOOD GET LESS PAY ANF JOBS AND LOOK AT ALL THE MONEY THE STATE IS GETTING LOOK AT ALL THE UNDER EMPLOYED PEOPLE IN FLAGLER COUNTY LOOK AT ALL THE HOMELESS FAMILIES IN FLAGLER COUNTY AND YET FLORIDA IS GETTING CUT BACK ON ASSISTANCE MAYBE ALL THAT MONEY THE STATE IS GETTING FROM THE RIGGED CAMERAS IN PALM COAST MAYBE THEY CAN HELP THE STARVING FAMILIES HERE.

  3. Anonymous says:

    ATS has sold the gullible Palm Coast city council on this red light fiasco. Again for the benefit of the city to the detriment of the citizens of this city. We need new council members and city managers that will look out for the interest of it’s citizens.

  4. Ray Thorne says:

    Must not be getting fleeced too bad and harming the economy is of no concern if what i heard about the city using red light camera money to purchase 50 lapel cameras for the Sheriffs Office. That’s some serious cash..

  5. Random Citizen says:

    Why does it seem like the CIty Council is operating in The Twilight Zone too much of the time? They can’t seem to process constructive criticism in a mature way and all the birds of that feather seem to have somehow flocked together. We did hear they picked the last member in secret meetings didn’t we?

    If you look at it from a psychological perspective, something is certainly off kilter.

    Are they really serving the public well beeing or, are they struggling or trying to satisfy some deep-seeded power and control issues?

    It’s like they are that one odd child we all knew in school or the playground who would argue a case no matter how bizarre or obvious the lie was. “Loopy Larry.” They do exhibit insecurity, defensiveness, and seem more concerned about winning arguments at the expense of others rather than doing what’s best for who they serve.

    Could a bitter seed have somehow taken root and is now manifesting itself quite clearly?

    Does the city have a psychologist on staff or in the HR Department?

    Aren’t they bordering on harming the public’s well being with the things that have been adding up for a while now?

    Someone should look into this.

    • Patriot Peg says:

      it is being looked into. believe they do not approve of scrutiny. it is almost as if they had learned at obama’s knee. we, the people, must be more diligent. they only get away w/this stuff, because no one is watching closely enough. things are about to change.

  6. Anonymous says:

    If ya really want to stop getting “fleeced” dont run a red light. Kinda easy.

    • Anonymous says:

      Don’t pull this “it’s about traffic safety” horse-shit. We all know by now that this isn’t the case. It doesn’t even reduce incidents of accidents.

    • Nancy N. says:

      What a supercillious attitude. So I suppose you, unlike every other human being on the planet, have never made a mistake?

    • right... says:

      Slamming on my brakes and praying no one rear ends me is getting very old.

  7. Sloop John B says:

    Bet the City Manager gets his big raise. It’s absolutely disgraceful. Time to move.

  8. Concerned Citizen says:

    These Red Light Cameras deter people from shopping and buying homes in Palm Coast. Also, they create a dangerous driving environment by causing folks to lock up their brakes prematurely.

  9. Anonymous says:

    FlaglerLive – speaking of cameras? Can you figure out what those cameras on either side of US-1 near Whiteview are for? They aren’t near an intersection and they look poised to capture people traveling on the road.

    I think this needs some serious investigating.

    • Anonymous says:

      That may be for commercial trucks, skipping the weight stations.

    • Nancy N. says:

      There’s another set at the northbound exit of I-95 at SR100. They are for capturing trucks that are taking detours to avoid the weigh stations.

      • Michael says:

        Something tells me they will be used for more than just that. We shouldn’t be so accepting of these ‘strategically’ placed cameras simply because they’ve given us valid reasons for their use.

        I heavily doubt they won’t be switched on and capturing video 24/7 and constantly monitored when “suspects” are “at large.” Who’s watching the watchmen?

        This is about watching the people. Frankly, I would rather a trailer skip out on being weighed once in a while than be recorded on my way to work. Those cameras look poised to capture license plates and not necessarily at truck-height. I wouldn’t be surprised if this was part of a national effort to track license plates on US highways.

  10. jp says:

    For $30,000, you want your voters to hate you?…..I need to see whos running this city and work to vote them out!

  11. Paul Henry says:

    “If ya really want to stop getting “fleeced” dont run a red light. Kinda easy. ”

    Stock answer to this this idea, which does not always work:
    Hey, “just don’t run the light”! What a neat idea. How about asking these folks how well it worked for them (WARNING- ATTENTION REQUIRED, more than 140 characters follow):

    Here are just 5 cases of wrongly-issued red light camera tickets in Florida.

    Wrong vehicle or owner was ticketed: “Just don’t run the light”
    1. Date/location: August 9, 2013: Duval County, FL (Jacksonville)
    Source: News4Jax.com news story
    Headline: Putnam Co. couple takes issue with red-light ticket
    Link: http://www.news4jax.com/news/putnam-county-couple-finds-problem-with-red-light-ticket/-/475880/21410294/-/mfr08m/-/index.html
    Synopsis: Joe Mace is a supporter of red light cameras who owns an orange Dodge Charger. She received a ticket in the mail and upon watching the video, the tag on the car was hers but it was clearly not her car (different color; tag in different location). When Mace went to the courthouse to try and figure out what was going on, she said no one could help her. Media involvement was required. Disposition is unknown.

    Paul Henry’s comment: This is the second documented case of a cloned tag in Florida. There is no exception in the law for this activity, making the vehicle owner liable for the fine.

    2. Date/location: July 6, 2012: Daytona Beach, FL
    Source: WESH-TV news story
    Headline: Man who only drives scooter in neighborhood gets far away red-light ticket
    Link: http://www.wesh.com/news/central-florida/volusia-county/Man-who-only-drives-scooter-in-neighborhood-gets-far-away-red-light-ticket/-/12983450/15426490/-/ihycxnz/-/index.html
    Synopsis: Donald Abbott, 79, rides his scooter inside his senior community in Volusia County. Somehow, though, he was given a ticket for running a red light an intersection 22 miles away. The video showed a different person and scooter, but he was convicted and had to pay a $264 fine. His tag appeared on the offending vehicle but it clearly was a different vehicle.

    Paul Henry’s comment- After watching the news video, this appears to be the first documented instance of a cloned tag. There is no legal defense to this under the automated for-profit law.

    3. Date/location: October 4, 2012: Manatee County, FL
    Source: Bay News 9 news story
    Headline: Red light ticket snafu case of ‘it wasn’t me’
    Link: http://www.baynews9.com/content/news/baynews9/news/article.html/content/news/articles/bn9/2012/10/3/red_light_ticket_sna.html
    Synopsis: Owner’s moped was in their garage when a motorcycle allegedly ran a light in Tampa. Officer there guessed at the tag and ticketed the moped owner. Media involvement required to clear their name.

    4. Date/location: April 27, 2012: Orlando, FL
    Source: WKMG-TV news story
    Headline: Man fights red light camera violation, wins
    Case of mistaken identity investigated by Local 6
    Link: http://www.clickorlando.com/news/Man-fights-red-light-camera-violation-wins/-/1637132/11826760/-/iqw1i6/-/index.html
    Synopsis: Owner received a camera ticket and reviewed the photo evidence. His vehicle stopped and another one ran the light. He didn’t pay the fine and got a $262 ticket. In lieu of taking time from work, the media got involved and got the ticket dismissed. Local official claimed camera company error- cropped out wrong tag.

    5. Date/location: February 20, 2012: Jacksonville, FL
    Source: First Coast News, Jacksonville, FL
    Headline: Red Light Camera Ticket Mistake Causes License Suspension
    Link: http://www.firstcoastnews.com/news/article/242806/483/Red-Light-Camera-Ticket-Mistake-Causes-License-Suspension
    Synopsis: Owner received a camera ticket and saw it was not his car in the photo, and disregarded the ticket. His license was later suspended. Owner has a GMC pickup, car in the photo was a Mercedes. Owner’s tag is XGF, car in photo is XGE. ATS apologized for the error.

    Paul Henry’s comment: In many of these examples, the city will not dismiss a ticket when their own evidence shows the wrong vehicle was ticketed. None of these situations would arise if police officers were enforcing the law via traffic stops and warnings/tickets.

    • Nancy N. says:

      I had a similar problem to #5 involving a toll ticket from Orlando. We had sold the car the tag was for and had not yet turned in the tag from it to the DMV. I got a ticket in the mail saying that a car with that plate was being ticketed for running a toll plaza without paying on an Orlando metro freeway. I was in Palm Coast that day and the car was clearly not mine. I had to fight with the toll authority to get they to look at the photo again. They finally admitted they misread the plate in the photo.

      This stuff is going to happen anytime you have a system of issuing citations based on photos of plates taken by cameras, and not actual people who are present on the scene like a police officer. The risk of error is too high – and the entities involved have a profit motive to not correct the errors.

      • Buzz Aard says:

        This ‘stuff’ is going to happen because your local government is too cheap to hire more deputies to enforce traffic laws.
        Folks, it is all about money. It is another tax without calling it a tax. Just look at what the article is about. The MONEY that goes to the state instead of our local public coffers. It isn’t about traffic control. It is about fleecing the public with yet another tax.

  12. Paul Henry says:

    The red light camera scheme excels at one thing- making money. Where else could your business invest $520,000 (ATS campaign donations to FL politicians 2008-2013) over a 5 year period and see a return of millions within just a couple of years? What other investment uses the force of government (license & tag suspensions) to ensure profit? What other investment does not care about innocence or guilt?

    This issue is not the typical “red vs blue” political issue. It is red, white, and blue (American justice) vs green (money & corruption). Turning law enforcement into a for-profit scheme is a bad idea.

  13. Rick says:

    “The city council in other words–which claims to make economic development a priority–is exclusively responsible for letting those dollars out of the local economy.”

    Keep on bitching to no avail boys.
    You made your bed now sleep in it.

  14. neverwas says:

    Imagine how many more local police we could hire with less then 1/4. Of that 3 million dollars if there was a way to get it without cameras. I would feel a lot safer knowing we had more officers and cars then the security cameras give. I talk with people and they are afraid to come to Palm Coast for fear of red light cameras, this hurts our local economy. We need jobs not red light cameras.

  15. djsii says:

    It is all about the money. It is not about safety, reducing accidents, promoting safe driving skills, or saving little Susie crossing the big bad street. It is just all about the money.

    It IS NOT about the money that is leaving the city and going to Florida state or to ATS.

    Palm Coast city officials have made it perfectly clear that they are not concerned at all with the massive amount of revenue loss. Their heads are clearly stuck in the sand when any mention of reviewing cost-Vs-benefit with respect to the red light cameras. Even the worst of accountants can tell you how great the impact of the red light fiasco is on the local economy.

    It IS about the dollars that wind up in the Palm Coast city coffers AT ANY COST to the citizens of Palm Coast

    Our Palm Coast city officials are EAGER to watch $2,700,000 dollars of our city’s economy leave each year so that they can pocket $361,000 for the city officials SLUSH FUND.

    They tell us that they can’t do anything about it now because of the contract they negotiated with ATS. Does the contract stipulate that the city can’t modify the timing/duration of the yellow light? Currently Florida has a legal requirement for the MINIMUM time of the yellow light, but there is no such mandate for the MAXIMUM duration of a yellow light. Say it to yourself……One thousand one…One thousand two. That is 2 seconds. The data from virtually every reputable source supports that by lengthening the light duration, even by a couple of seconds, would RADICALLY reduce the number of violations and increase safety at intersections. Now this is something that the state of Florida, the City of Palm Coast, and ATS would fight tooth and nail. This would SEVERLY cut into their “red light safety tax”.

    My questions to all readers would be: What does it take to get a referendum on the ballot that extends the minimum yellow timing mandate by the state by two seconds? How does two additional seconds at a traffic light negatively impinge upon your day? Is an additional 2 seconds of your time worth the MILLIONS of dollars leaving our economy? Are two additional seconds worth the increase in safety and the decrease in personal stress at those stop lights? Why are we required to have 40+ red light cameras, why not just the minimum?

    The entire city of New York (population ~ 8,335,000, area ~470 sq. mi.) has 250 red light cameras. The City of Palm Coast (population ~77,370, area 90 sq. mi.) has 43 cameras. Is it me, or does there seem to be a bit of over-kill with red light cameras in Palm Coast?

    ONE THOUSAND ONE……….ONE THOUSAND TWO

    http://www.motorists.org/red-light-cameras/timing-myths:

    Yellow Light Timing Myths

    Proponents of red light cameras will often criticize the lengthening of the yellow light time as a solution to red light violations. They claim this is a short-term solution because motorists will become acclimated to the longer yellow light time and continue to violate the light.

    Not true. Adjusting the yellow light time to an appropriate length for an intersection reduces the amount of red light violations. And, studies have shown that the motorist does not become acclimated to the new timing and violations do not resume. Here is a list of those studies illustrating the invalidity of their claims:

    “The data show that the percentage of last-to-cross vehicles clearing the intersection (T+0.2) seconds or more past the yellow onset was not appreciably changed by the extension of the yellow phase.”
    The Influence of the Time Duration Of Yellow Traffic Signals On Driver Response, Stimpson/ Zador/ Tarnoff, ITE Journal, November 1980

    “Research has consistently shown that drivers do not, in fact, adapt to the length of the yellow.”
    Determining Vehicle Change Intervals – A Proposed Recommended Practice”, ITE, 1985

    “Olson and Rothery reported in 1972 that their research showed that drivers were “virtually” certain to stop if their required deceleration rate was less than 8 feet per second squared and virtually certain to continue if the deceleration rate required was in excess of 12 feet per second squared”
    Determining Vehicle Change Intervals – A Proposed Recommended Practice”, ITE, 1985

    “The average implied deceleration rate of the group with the highest crash rate was slightly over 13 feet per second squared, and the deceleration rate for the group with the lowest crash rate was 8.5 feet per second squared”
    “Effect of Clearance Interval Timing on Traffic Flow and Crashes at Signalized Intersections”, Zador/ Stein/ Shapiro/ Tarnoff, ITE Journal, November 1985

    A real world example that illustrates that motorists do not adjust to the yellow light time and begin violating red lights again can be found in Fairfax County, Virginia. The engineers increased the yellow light time on March 26, 2001 from 4 seconds to 5.5 seconds with a result of a 96 percent decrease in violations.

  16. The Truth says:

    Our new city logo should be a red light camera, because that’s what we are becoming known for. ATS continues to profit from the morons on our City Council. It’s a shame they were talked into putting so many up. Much of this money going to the state and the ATS could have gone back into our local economy.

    Please remove these camera’s!

  17. Red Face says:

    Naples, FL got rid of their Red Light Cameras. Why can’t Palm Coast?

    Please refer to the news article link:
    http://www.naplesnews.com/news/2013/feb/12/stopped-collier-county-gives-green-light-to-red/?legalforum=1

    • Mike says:

      @ Redface, because you see red, but the City Council see’s nothing but green, they are not going to give up $360,000 a year in free revenue. They can try and push the safety issue, but it’s nothing more than a revenue generating machine, the rent alone is $360K a year. This is free money to politicians who live in the twilight zone, they should start a knitting club and really all retire, this may be one of the worst City Councils since we incorporated.

  18. Jim says:

    I’d like to see a study on the impact of red light cameras and rear end collisions. I have had to lock down my truck several times because of the person ahead of me over reacting to a yellow light.

    • Nancy N. says:

      See, you call it overreacting…some of us call it “make sure we don’t have to starve because we had to send our grocery money to ATS”.

    • Go to motorists.org for MANY reports of higher crash rates with cameras. It does not happen in every city, but it happens often enough to be a well known risk.

      James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association

  19. Nancy says:

    You are missing one more column:

    A column made up of scull & crossbones, R.I.P. signs, arm casts, head stitches, crutches, etc.

    e.g. Injuries and deaths that DID NOT happen because people actually STOPPED for red lights.

    This who debate matches the stunning reality that people are just too IQ challenged: Verrry easy…don’t try to RUN red lights and NO money is involved. Geeeessh!

  20. Geezer says:

    So the fleecer gets fleeced. Let’s get rid of these damned cameras already.

    I wouldn’t hate these cameras so much if we were able to get a fair court hearing
    to dispute the resulting tickets. What if you have an emergency vehicle behind you
    blaring its siren so that you get out of the way (run the red light)?
    Do you really think that they’ll not send you a summons?
    What if you go through a green and the car in front of you stops to a crawl, leaving you
    in the middle of the intersection as the light turns red? Snap, instant ticket for you!
    Think that’s fair?

    You have an emergency with your kid, you look for cars, then go through the red light
    on 100 at the hospital entrance. Do you deserve that ticket when minutes and seconds count?

    Ever notice cars and trucks gunning their engines to make it through the camera intersections
    as the light goes from yellow to red? Ever have somebody stop short as you come to a full stop
    prior to turning on the red? That my friends, is dangerous. -Especially if you have a little car.

    I HATE THESE CAMERAS. I hope they explode.

  21. Winny says:

    I have been in law enforcement twenty years, and have never seen a community so clearly united on a single front to get rid of something. I would hope that the elected officials of Palm Coast take notice of the general public’s reaction to the decisions that they make. I am quite sure that if this camera issue is not resolved in a timely manner, there are going to be some elected officials out of work in the near future.

    Take notice elected members of the City of Palm Coast, your voting public has spoken. You had better do something to get this heat off your back. You got people mad-as-hell, and it does not sound like this red-light camera issue is going away for you.

    • Nancy says:

      hummm.. a little more ‘professional, scientific’ than ‘anecdotal comments’ poll might be good before declaring common sense safety measures the end of the town’s electorate.

  22. Several points.
    1) Increasing the yellow intervals by one second would gut the straight through violation rate and the $$$.
    2) Slow right on red turns virtually never cause crashes, those tickets are about $$$ – not safety.
    3) Cameras often increase the total crash rates, mostly rear enders where yellows are too short.
    4) FDOT changed the yellow interval rules in 2011 to encourage cities to deliberately mis-engineer the lights with too-short yellows to deliberately cause more tickets and $83 commissions for the state.
    5) The state takes 52.5% off the top without paying a penny of the camera costs, so now you know the real reason for point 4).
    6) Palm Coast voters could end the scams by voting out all the camera supporters on Council.
    7) IF the council made moral decisions, they could increase the yellow intervals by about one second and change the right on red “prudent” definition to any approach speed under 25 mph. The ticket rates would fall below the level to support the cameras and ATS would ask to end the contract early at no penalty.

    8) #7 is extremely unlikely to happen with the current Council, it takes #6 to get moral decisions.

    9) Palm Coast and other Florida residents need to contact their state Representatives and Senators to demand that the legislature pass Senator Brandes bill to ban the cameras statewide.

    James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association

  23. Tom says:

    Ok so we all know these cameras are strictly a money making scheme for the ATS, state and city governments. So what can we do? First we can vote all the bums out that are getting their pockets lined by the ATS regardless oif their party affiiation. Next you can boycott the cities and areas that carry these cameras. I do all my shopping in St Augustine just 20-25 minutes North…no cameras there. You can also write you local legislatures to tell them how you feel. Lastly if you get a ticket….DON”T PAY IT!!!!! Fight it like you’ve never fought before unitl you get a real judge to hear your case not some rigged kangaroo court.

  24. ExPalmCoaster says:

    In paragraph 4, you state that PC stands to lose $2.7M. If you take away the cameras, how much more funds would have been raised over and above what the local Sheriff’s deputies would have issued in fines? My guess is $360K.

    You’re a crack reporter, please find out what the fines were prior to camera installation?

  25. Rob says:

    Most people are well meaning. On the other hand some are obstinate and obdurate when it comes to decision making. Random Citizen’s psychological perspective is right on track when making an objective analysis of the behaviors of the town council. It would take up too much space to really dive deep into the causes of their behaviors and responses to citizen inquiry.

    For instance the city has an image of being business un-friendly, right or wrong it has that image. When the issue is raised the town council jumps to the defensive as does the town manager. In the wake of Panera Bread not building another store the town manager suggested hiring a consultant to look into the town’s practices relative to the accusation of being unfriendly to business. That would be the cost of a consultant to review what the town manager is paid to oversee. Another example is when a citizen asked about a referendum being placed on a ballot for a vote to remove or keep the traffic cameras, the mayor’s reply was one of feigning ignorance by saying he hadn’t heard of any initiative by the council.
    The mayor can’t run again, the others can be replaced when their time is due.

    The cameras were tried and they appear to create more of a cost than a benefit. People in general don’t want to admit their mistakes. Like the football coach who implores his team to keep running the same play until it works, even when an opponent has stopped it all game long. Has anyone ever seen a first round draft pick in professional sports cut? Almost never, even if his play is marginal, because no one wants to have their judgment exposed as faulty. It is the same thing with the cameras in Palm Coast. This town council is going to keep those cameras even as they continue to a drain dollars out of the economy of this city.

  26. w.ryan says:

    For those of you who defend these cameras…Next is public lewdness. Cameras that catch you pulling wedgies out of your privates in a public place. This constitutes a class D misdemeanor. Whether or not you were culpable regardless of the the looseness of the undies. This is unsightly. What if a child sees this. It corrupts young minds especially if they feel this act is of a sexual nature. Wedgies cause accidents too. Just stop! The next phase in the plan is to insert sensors in areas of our roads… that is if you don’t stop the intrusion by the state. These sensors will correlate with your license plates and calculate your speed. Summonses will be issued if anyone exceed the legal speed limit stated in that area of the road regardless of whether you are passing a chicken farmer driving to market . Don’t inadvertently step too hard on the gas. It’ll cost you. Lets not forget those of you who don’t signal as they change lanes. The City hasn’t. The summonses and fines that will be issued is calculated in numeration of violations during your trip. Car accidents happen. We must be allowed to be human. This means we’re not perfect. We make errors in judgement. Look at the Governors election! Great Scott!

  27. Since When says:

    Call me crazy, but when the Red Light Cameras started to spring up everywhere, the yellow lights got shorter and you got stopped at every lighted intersection by a red light. The timing on these lighted intersections were engineered to catch the traffic. You can’t make it across town on either PC Pkwy or Belle Terre without getting stopped at every light. I believe the correct way for lights to be engineered is to allow clear and easy egress and ingress. Saves time, saves money. Not in PC!

  28. For Since When says: Engineering for proper traffic flow and maximum safety is NOT profitable.

    James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association

  29. My Dads Son says:

    Every time I read articles about the traffic cameras the true purpose of those cameras is always revealed as being as source of revenue for the government. It’s not about law enforcement or traffic safety. It’s a sly way of imposing yet another tax on the citizenry and the local government is crying the blues because they aren’t getting a bigger piece of that financial pie.
    I say vote out the people who voted in the cameras.

    • For My Dads Son: Florida residents have another way to fight. Contact your state Representatives and Senators to ask them whether they will enthusiastically support and work for passage of the bills in the House and Senate for 2014 to ban the red light cameras. Make it clear that a total ban is all that is acceptable to you – and that you intend to have this issue influence your future votes. Make it clear that no compromises are acceptable – that the cameras must become illegal under Florida law.

      James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association

  30. James Heed says:

    Just paid my $162 ticket to Violationinfo.com. And I will not be stopping at the Palm Coast exits off I-4 ever again. I have made comments on Waze, TripAdvisor, and Google warning tourists to avoid this area!

    • For James Heed: Be sure you send a letter to the Palm Coast City Council telling them they lost your business – and why. If you have any merchants you used to patronize, send them letters as well telling them why you are no longer visiting the area to shop. If you switch your shopping to an area without the cameras, let those merchants know why they just got your business and why Palm Coast lost it.

      James C. Walker, Life Member-National Motorists Association

  31. Since 1987 says:

    Wife received a ticket for turning right on red. It was 6:50am, right on red at Pine Lakes Pkwy and Palm Coast Pkwy. Not a soul on the road, she came to a very short timed stop but apparently that’s not a “good enough stop.” Anyways, cost us over $160. We are a family of five on a single income, so guess what? That’s $160 out of our budget that will not be spent on local dining or entertainment. That’s exactly where I’m subtracting it from.

    • Robin Summer says:

      You should have called the TICKET CLINIC! They would have charged you $80.00 and would have won the case based on your violation of Constitutional rights. Only a police officer can give you a ticket for running a red light but in this city a code enforcement agent is issuing the tickets which is illegal. Also, the ticket is attached to the vehicles tag and not the driver. Again illegal if you were not the driver but received the ticket in your name because you own the car. My son just got off when he went to Ticket Clinic.

  32. Robin Summer says:

    Do not pay the ticket. Call the TICKET CLINIC. The Red Light cameras are a violation of your Constitional rights. They will guarantee to get you out of the citation for half the cost of the citation. I am not affiliated with Ticket Clinic. My son got a red light citation and he got off for the above reason.

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