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Maryland May Install More Speed Cameras

BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. (WJZ)–More speed cameras on Maryland roads could soon be a reality if one man gets his way.

Derek Valcourt has more on the controversial proposal.

The controversy will come back to the county–this time bigger than before. Last time, the county set a limit on the number of speed cameras it would install. Now some argue the county should put up as many cameras it sees fit.

Ask about speed cameras and opinions generally run along these two lines: 1. It forces people to slow down and be careful about driving or 2. It’s just another way to make money.

It’s a debate that grabbed attention in September of 2009 when the county first approved a limit of 15 speed cameras—allowed only in school zones operating between 6 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The cameras issue $40 tickets to anyone caught going more than 12 mph over posted speed.

“I think speed cameras are revenue neutral,” said County Councilman Tom Quirk.

Councilman Quirk is now leading the charge to remove the county’s 15-camera limit, so more cameras can be added near more schools.

“Why should we have a police officer sitting there giving people speeding tickets in a school zone when we can have a speed camera,” Quirk said. “Isn’t it better to have a police officer out there going after the bad guys on the streets?”

Speed camera opinions are still divided:

“Obviously people don’t drive the speed limit or they wouldn’t be worried about the cameras,” said Gale Dellasantina.

“They’re just too easy to sit there and make money that you can’t fight and you can’t deal with them in court because you can’t face your accuser,” said Christopher Lindsey.

“I’m probably somewhere in the middle,” said Jonathan Howard. “You have to be safe, but they have to make tax revenue somehow, and it’s obvious where it’s going to come from– all of us.”

The county will vote on allowing more speed cameras at their meeting Feb. 7. If approved, the new law would take effect later that month.

Supporters point out that the camera fine of $40 is less than the fine you’d get if a police officer wrote the ticket—which could also add points to your license.

More from Derek Valcourt
  • Anthony

    Drivers slow down right before approaching the camera and speed up a few yards after passing its eye. Just another way to fill gov workers pockets.

    • KottaMan


    • Mary

      True – True!!!!

  • davidj

    There is only one side of this issue, check the record. For the last few years every article on speed cameras, states the amount of revenue FIRST, then mentions safety. Keep ripping off Maryland drivers, that’s right it’s not a tax, it’s a FINE.

    • Marie Blankenship

      look at it as an optional tax. you can speed and pay the fine or you can drive the speed limit and save yourself the money. at least it’s a choice where a tax is not.

  • Where am I?

    Um, which county?

  • Tom

    I guess it doesn’t bother anyone that these cameras make mistakes and give tickets to the wrong vehicles.

    I just received a tip from a German lawyer friend of mine, that just last month – Dec of 2010, after expert analysis a report was published in Germany (home of the speed camera we use in the Workzone and school zones in most of Maryland) that addressed the accuracy and reliability issues with the system.
    It confirms that there is a problem with the way this system measures speed and then takes the photos. According to the exert report, the system on many occasions issued the ticket to the wrong vehicle. Also according to the report the manuf. Vitronics is issuing a software update that will address this issue, but not completely.
    However, that means that for at least one year now, the speed cameras have been giving tickets to the wrong people.

    BTW, this issue was suspected before and now has been proven at least a couple of times with indep. tests.

  • Where am I?


  • Where am I?


  • Where am I?


  • Where am I?


  • Where am I?


  • Where am I?

    Prince Geo9ges?
    Somebody please tell me because the news reporter won’t.
    This is the dumbest news writing ever posted to Yahoo.

    • MIke

      Read the top of the article — BALTIMORE COUNTY!!!!

  • JC

    Quirk the Jerk – wake up people it not abount safety that’s the pasaion word to justifiy the money squeeze and makes it defendable. It’s about MONEY what school or work zone is 24 / 7. If it was to change behavior or so important there would be points on your record. No the state / county make it easy just send us the money. If you go to court you would still pay the $40.00 but also are warned that there will be court cost. It’s cheaper to pay.

  • Anthony Walters

    I’m thinking Baltimore Co. That is where they got back in 2009. Harford Co. doesn’t have any speed camras. They do have red light cameras, on in Bel Air.

  • JC

    It’s Balto Co – Tom Quirk was Smith’s hand pick to take over Moxley’s council seat and was backed by all the deep money

  • Anthony Walters

    There are no points because the car is not pulled over, and they isn’t a officer to verify there registered owner it the person driving.

  • nancy winters

    in balt county.

    got a ticket from one already. they placed the camera at the bottom of a hill so that when gravity sped up your car, you’d get fined.

    • Chris

      that’s hella lame!

  • Braking for a camera is a hazard

    The court cost is $21 and you have to request by certified mail.

    The law is very specific that the locations must be published, but the lists are duplicated and confusing. The cameras must be have conspicuous signage , but the best is an 12” x 10” dull yellow sign. I once had one flash behind a bush with no particular signage at all.

    The safety argument is a joke, when I brake for the camera, I am creating a hazard to following traffic, and my attention is distracted from watching sidewalks, intersections, tec. to focusing on the camera and the speedometer. No, it’s not prudent. All municople vehicles are excepted from the tickets because it is not prudent or cost effective to brake for cameras.

    • Anthony Walters

      If you are going the speed limit ( or even five over, since they don’t flash till 12 over), there is no hazard.

  • JC

    Nancy my wife got her’s on the beltway in the slowest lane car in front and behind. With two vehicles in the middle and fast lanes lapping her. It’s a joke

  • It's not safety

    OMG, wasn’t Moxley the one with a DUI. Knee jerk politics?

  • InTheBurn

    If it isn’t about the revenue/money and all about safety then they should take all fines collected from the cameras and give the monies back to the state/county residents as a refund. If they aren’t willing to agree to that, then it is about revenue, not safety.

  • JC

    Yea Sam did us all proud, now I’m stuck with this new wantabe make me a household name.

  • InTheBurn

    Where Am I – It is Baltimore County. If you look at the By-Line in front of the lead of a news article it tells you the location the reporting is being done from and who did it (source). In this case it states, “BALTIMORE COUNTY, Md. (WJZ).”

  • InTheBurn

    – I posted before that was there. You’re late. Try to catch up.

  • JC

    More added NEAR Schools here’s where we again loose Big Bother’s definition of NEAR 2, 5, 10, 25 Miles

    You see they hire interpreters to look at all the loop holes. These cameras must be paid for along with the operartors and processors salary
    . Like the ones Baltimore City has on Northern Parkway by Sinai Hospital that you would be hard pressed to find a School sign anywhere around.

  • IN it for the money

    The fine is paid to the camera vendor when you mail it and the municipality collects a percentage of the profit after costs. If you request trail the money is paid to the courts of Maryland. If everyone requested trial, the vendor would become insolvent. The formula clearly explains this is a revenue venture.

  • JC

    Yea the airlines are already overbooked with lobbist, safety nazi, and camera manufactures reps heading for Towson.with there charts and graphs to tell us how much better our life will be for there shareholders Oh I meant to say the people of Balto County

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