Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Fairmount Heights Failed To Obtain Speed Camera Permits

WJLA reports that Prince George's County is telling the small town of Fairmount Heights that they need to shut down their speed cameras after it was discovered that the city failed to obtain proper permits for the cameras on a county road before deploying them.  Motorists have complained that the town failed to post required notices and signage or to obtain permits showing the cameras were withing a legally designated school zone.

Motorists have complained that the city failed to provide public notice before two cameras were placed at 5400 Addison rd and 61rst Ave at Sheriff road, and that there are no "photo enforced" signs disclosing the presence of the cameras, and that these are required by state law.  It's unclear whether the two locations are within 1/2 mile of a school (the maximum distance a school zone can be designated from a school), but no public schools are located on Sheriff road or Addison road in the immediate vicinity of the cameras.

Attorney Donney Knepper stated to WJLA that he believed this provides a basis to contest tickets already issued:  "The citizens of the county were not put on proper notice, and that should render any ticket that was issued from one of those machines null and void. And anybody who received such a ticket should challenge it in court, and that violation and fine should be vacated."

However ultimately it would be up to a judge will need to determine whether the existing tickets are enforceable.

A representative of AAA ( an insurance company which has lobbied the Maryland legislature in favor of speed cameras in 2009 and 2013, but which often speaks publicly about speed cameras for PR purposes ) called the cameras a "rogue program" and stated "It's nothing more than municipal greed".

Fairmount Heights signed a five year contract with Brekford Corp to provide speed camera services in 2011