|Copy of letter sent to recipients of bogus speed camera tickets|
WBFF also reported that the location apparently was not marked as a school zone. Under state law speed cameras in Baltimore can only be used in School zones or work zones, and according to state transportation article 21-803 a road is only considered school zone if it is marked by appropriate signage. Baltimore City circumvented this by creating large number of new school zones solely for the purpose of using speed cameras -- even though doing so conflicts with State Highway Administration guidelines -- and in some cases the city has added the speed cameras before putting up the legally required signs.
Baltimore City's cameras are owned and maintained by the same contractor as Montgomery County's cameras, ACS State and Local Solutions. As with Montgomery County the contractor receives a fee which is based on the number of citations. The city of Baltimore signed the agreement in 2009 after writing $7million in revenues into its FY2010 budget before the camera locations were even selected.
Maryland State law requires speed camera citations to be approved by a police officer, which is normally done using software provided by the camera vendor. Yet apparently all 932 of these citations passed through that whatever review process took place without the problem being noticed.
(update 9/28/2012: an archived video clip of the news report can be seen here)