Fayetteville, Contractors Cash In On Red Light Runners
Posted September 4, 2000 7:00 a.m. EDT
FAYETTEVILLE — Red light cameras have Fayetteville leaders seeing lots of green. The city has already collected more than $200,000 in fines from red light runners. However, the new system is not a sure thing.
Each day, hundreds of cars pass busy Fayetteville intersections. Most are unaware that there are traffic cameras posted nearby. They are ready to take their picture if they run the red light. Teresa Kendall learned that lesson the hard way.
"I was going down Sycamore Dairy Road. I was going through the traffic light, and it was yellow," she says. "A week later, I got a ticket from them, saying I ran the red light."
Instead of fighting that ticket, she paid the fine.
"If I tried to fight it, it was still $50 to fight it so, all in all, it wasn't even worth it," she says.
Since the first traffic camera went up in April, the city collected close to $200,000 in fines. However, only a small portion of that money stays in Fayetteville.
"Out of every $50 that is collected for a fee, the city only retains $15," says city spokesman Jason Brady. "Thirty-five dollars goes to the contractor."
There is still a profit because the cameras were put up at no cost to the city. The money will be used for intersection improvements. However, that is little consolation to Kendall.
"You're still going to have to pay to fight it, so all in all, you're going to lose out," she says.
Getting out of one of a traffic camera ticket is not easy. You need solid proof if you want to appeal it.