Senator Jim Kastama of Puyallup and Representative Christopher Hurst of Enumclaw are recommending that several cities that have installed red light cameras should lower the cost of the fines associated with violations associated with the cameras. In Western Washington, the following cities have installed the cameras: Tacoma, Bellevue, Lakewood, Puyallup, Federal Way, Auburn, Fife, Lynnwood and Lacey.
Sen. Kastama has introduced Senate Bill 6410 which would make the fines the same as an average parking ticket; Sen. Hurst has introduced HB2780 which would make the red-light violation fines $25 and increase yellow lights at intersections to four seconds.
The two legislators said that the goal of the cameras was to improve public safety, not to be a “cash cow” for the cities. Several cities have made over 1 million dollars with their red light cameras and have fines of more than $100.
When the legislature was introduced to allow cities to install the cameras back in 2005, fines were supposed to be equivalent to a parking infraction.
Information for this article is from Tacoma’s The News Tribune.com.