Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Speed Camera Repeal Bill Introduced in Senate

A bill to repeal speed cameras, Senate Bill 785, has been introduced for consideration by the state senate.

The bill's sponsors are senators E. J. Pipkin(R, Kent, Queen Anne's, Cecil, and Caroline Counties), Richard Colburn (R, Caroline, Dorchester, Talbot, and Wicomico Counties), and Nancy Jacobs (R, Harford and Cecil counties).   The synopsis for the bill states that it's purpose is: "Repealing the authority of counties and municipalities in the State to use speed monitoring systems to enforce highway speed laws; repealing the authority to use work zone speed control systems to enforce highway speed laws within work zones; etc."

We earlier covered the House Version of this bill, HB251.

The repeal legislation has been introduced in the wake of a series of debacles including:
  • Baltimore City's disastrous speed camera errors, in which it has been admitted that hundreds of innocent motorists were found to have been wrongly ticketed by faulty speed cameras provided by speed camera contractor Xerox Corp, and that the contractor had kept a faulty camera online for 8 months after grossly erroneous speed readings were first noticed.  The cameras were so flawed that they even issuing a ticket to a stationary vehicle.
  • A scathing audit of the SHA's speed camera program, which revealed that the State's 'SafeZones' programs skipped on the testing of equipment, and that the state flouted its own law regarding a requirement that speed cameras be 'independently' certified.

To get a vote in the Senate, SB 785 would first need to clear the Judicial Proceedings Committee.

UPDATE:  A Hearing for SB785 is scheduled for February 20 at 1pm.

Judicial Proceedings Members:
Brian E. Frosh (Chair): 301-858-3124; Toll-free in MD: 1-800-492-7122 ext. 3124; brian.frosh@senate.state.md.us
Lisa A. Gladden (Vice Chair): 410-841-3697; Toll-free in MD: 1-800-492-7122 ext. 3697;
nancy.jacobs@senate.state.md.us  (SPONSOR!)