City Moves Forward on Reforms to Red Light Camera Program

Lawndale News Chicago's Bilingual Newspaper - Business

As part of a continued effort to reform the red light camera enforcement program, which was enacted in 2003, Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Aldermen Tom Tunney, Anthony Beale and Walter Burnett introduced a substitute ordinance containing the reforms announced in March when the city shut down 50 red light enforcement cameras that have a very low number of or no serious crashes. The ordinance introduced on Tuesday contains additional reforms to the program to enhance community input and public safety, including:

  • Requiring a public community meeting before red light cameras are removed, moved or added. These meetings will serve to explain how the program works, provide the traffic crash data that is used in deciding whether to remove or install a camera and to solicit public feedback. For example, four of the cameras that were recommended for removal in 2013 by the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) were kept in place at the community’s request because they wanted to keep the enhanced safety benefits that the red light cameras brought to their neighborhood.
  • Accelerating the installation of pedestrian countdown timers at all remaining red light camera intersections without timers. Out of 149 intersections that have a red-light camera, only nine still do not have pedestrian timers installed yet, but the process will be complete by June 1.
  • Instituting payment plan reforms that lower the down payment requirements and allow greater flexibility for motorists who are experiencing financial hardship.

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