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Washington Judge Upholds Public Right To Vote On Red-Light Cameras

A judge in Bellingham, Washington, recently rejected American Traffic Solutions' (ATS') request to prevent the public from voting on red-light cameras, according to The Bellingham Herald. The camera company hoped to block an initiative that would allow the public to vote on the issue in November, according to the newspaper. However, Whatcom County Superior Court Judge Ira Uhrig denied the company's request on Wednesday, ruling that it is the right of citizens to petition the government. The initiative, if approved, would cause any traffic cameras to be removed and voter approval would be required to re-install the cameras, reports the news source. The fines from any cameras would also be limited to $10. According to the media outlet, Uhrig fined ATS $10,000 for violating the Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation state law, which aims to prevent companies from silencing the public right to petition the government. Uhrig's decision has been considered a landmark decision by some, as other judges have sided with red-light camera companies on similar issues. A Houston judge recently invalidated an initiative in which voters decided to shut off ATS red-light cameras, according to the Houston Chronicle. Houston has since reinstated its red-light camera program, reports the news source.
Posted in Government, Red Light
Aug 20th, 2011