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A brewing border battle over red light cameras

by | Nov 3, 2022 | Traffic Violations |

Red light cameras are a type of traffic enforcement that takes a picture of a vehicle entering the intersection following a light turning red. The photo is evidence to enforce traffic laws. The evidence is reviewed to determine a potential violation. A citation is then mailed to the vehicle’s owner, alleged to be in violation of the law.

Red light cameras

Many states have red light camera laws in place, including New York. Others don’t. That includes New Jersey. Following a pilot program, speed cameras were outlawed eight years ago. Then Governor Chris Christie and the legislature subsequently chose not to renew the program.

The legislation would bar the Motor Vehicle Commission and other state entities from disclosing the personal information of Garden State drivers to another state. The bill would also impose or collect fines that result from alleged traffic violations by a speed control device or signal monitoring system, aka red light cameras.

The state senate unanimously passed the bill at the end of June, the second attempt following similar 2016 legislation that failed to progress.

Aggressive pushback

In response, New York legislators want to fine Garden State’s residents driving crossing the border a $50 non-cooperation fee. Passage would “pad” the preexisting $16 cash toll to cross the Hudson into Manhattan.

Legislative leaders in New York refer to the Jersey bill as “dangerous” and fear a lack of safety from “scofflaw drivers” sidestepping responsibility for violating the state’s traffic laws. State senators are proposing two similar bills that will “fine” vehicle drivers with another state failing to cooperate with photo and signal monitoring devices.

New Jersey state Senator and co-sponsor Declan O’Scanlon, along with other state legislators, continues to stoke the fire by threatening pushback in the form of a $100 fee for New York residents to enter their state.