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Houston's Red Light Cameras Are On But No One is Watching

The city of Houston has been forced to turn its red light cameras back on, but so far no tickets have been issued. The Houston Chronicle reports that the police department has not staffed the room where the surveillance footage from the cameras is shown, meaning that there is no one there to catch traffic offenders. City Attorney David Feldman told the news source that eventually the footage would be reviewed. "The violations are being recorded, and they're being put in a (computer) queue, but HPD is still in the process of mobilizing the manpower to actually process the violations because every one of those has to be reviewed," he said. Feldman also noted that about 60 percent of the violations that are recorded ultimately result in tickets. The city has been embroiled in a legal controversy with the Arizona-based company that runs its red light camera program, American Traffic Solutions Inc. Houston turned the cameras off after a November 2010 referendum showed that a majority of voters did not like the red light camera ticket issuing devices. However, the city's contract with the company may have been violated by the move, resulting in the cameras being turned back on this month.
Posted in Government, Red Light
Jul 18th, 2011

Long Beach's Red Light Cameras Have Been Off Since December

The Long Beach Press-Telegram recently reported that Long Beach, California's five red light cameras have been turned off since December. The city's contract with the company that operates the cameras - American Traffic Solutions Inc. - expired at the end of 2010 and city officials are currently considering whether the contract should be renewed. "We've been working with the Police Department and looking at accident statistics and other data related to red-light cameras," Erik Sund, the purchasing agent and business relations manager for Long Beach, told the news source. "It can be a sensitive issue to the public, so we're doing our homework." The city has had the cameras - which issue red light camera tickets - since 2001, according to the news provider. Last year, the Long Beach Police Department said that 5,122 tickets were issued for red light violations. A number of cities - including Anaheim and Houston - have voted to ban the red light cameras. In addition, the Los Angeles Police Commission recently voted to put an end to the controversial program.
Posted in Government, Red Light
Jul 15th, 2011

TicketKick® Announces Their Money Back Guarantee- Traffic Ticket Dismissed or TicketKick's Full Fee Back to Customer

TicketKick®, California's leading resource for traffic ticket defense, helps drivers beat traffic tickets now with a money back guarantee. If their customer's case is not completely dismissed, TicketKick® will issue a refund back to the customer. TicketKick® helps thousands of drivers save money on ticket fines, keep their driving records clean, and save time in court by preparing a comprehensive written defense that drivers can simply mail to the court to contest their traffic ticket.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) July 13, 2011 California drivers know all too well the fines and hassle associated with receiving a traffic ticket. Until recently, drivers who were cited with a ticket were left with the option of trying to fight it on their own, hire an expensive attorney, or just pay their ticket. California based legal company, TicketKick® fills that niche market for people who would like the assistance of a qualified team of experts to help them fight their traffic ticket without paying the average attorney fees or having to risk the extra cost associated with hiring assistance. TicketKick® has helped thousands of drivers fight speeding, red-light, stop sign, and other common traffic tickets and has always offered a money back guarantee of their defense fee. Until now, like other similar services in the industry, they charged a non-refundable administrative fee to help cover their overhead costs. Greg Muender, TicketKick's Founder and President says, "Most people were OK paying the admin fee, but we got to thinking, 'Why should we keep any of their money if their case doesn't get dismissed?' so now we don't, and now our customers truly have nothing to lose using our service." TicketKick® is now proud to announce their new refund policy: a money back guarantee of their Flat Fee, making them leaders in the industry as being the most affordable traffic ticket defense experts offering an unbeatable level of customer service and expertise in traffic ticket defense. They've also made it easier for their customers to apply for a refund if their case is not dismissed. "We used to require our customers to mail us their refund request documents, but now we welcome a simple and easy fax or email with a copy of their notice of decision so we can start their refund process right away," Greg added. "The point with TicketKick® is to provide the most simple and easy process possible in helping people get their ticket dismissed. Other companies may have very strict or ridged terms and conditions but that just makes the process difficult for everyone. We make it simple and easy so our customers can beat their traffic tickets and move on with their life." TicketKick® is a registered Legal Document Assistant in California, providing self help services in traffic ticket defense, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick® works with attorneys in California in developing their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics. TicketKick's goal is to help people get their traffic tickets dismissed, and although not every customer will win their case, TicketKick® offers a refund and a free consultation for guilty verdicts. TicketKick® representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. ###
Jul 14th, 2011

Red Light Camera Tickets Can Cause Large Increases to Insurance Premiums

Traffic tickets are a drag for a number of reasons, as not only are they an immediate drain on one's wallet, but they can also have a long-term effect on one's finances through increases to insurance rates. An Insurance.com analysis of rates found that even one moving violation could cause one's insurance costs to increase greatly. Further, just three such violations can increase rates by 50 percent. The website analyzed the insurance costs for drivers who bought a one-car, one-driver policy and found that the average annual premium for those with no moving violations - which can include red light camera tickets - was $1,119. After just one ticket, that number shot up 18 percent to $1,318; after two it increased 34 percent to $1,497; and three moving violations on the record of the sampled drivers resulted in a 53 percent increase to annual premiums, meaning these motorists had to pay $1,713 each year. Insurance.com found that not only do violations for speeding and driving under the influence affect insurance rates, but citations for actions such as running a red light can cause premiums to soar. Due to this fact, it is important that red light camera tickets and other violations are fought, to not only protect one's money in the short-term, but in the long-term as well. In a recent editorial, The Washington Times called out a survey by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) that showed drivers supported red light cameras, despite the fact that no ballot measure supporting the cameras has ever been approved by voters. The periodical pointed out that the IIHS is funded by insurance companies that have a vested interest in tickets being issued so they can increase drivers' rates. In addition, red light camera tickets can cause one to get points on his or her license in a number of states including California. While one should always be sure to follow all traffic regulations, there are instances where citations are issued - either by law enforcement officers or red light ticket cameras - erroneously. Those who have had to deal with such a situation may want to fight a traffic ticket and California allows trial by written declaration, meaning one does not even need to be in court to contest a citation.
Posted in Red Light
Jul 13th, 2011

Houston Voters Ban on Red Light Cameras Invalidated

Red-light camera use has been reinstated in Houston due to a decision from Federal Judge Lynn Hughes, according to ABC 13 News. Voters chose to end red-light camera citations in an election last year. However, the news source reports that Hughes invalidated this election and refused the city's request for appeal. A prominent reason for the renewed use of the cameras is the city's contract with the camera provider, American Traffic Solutions (ATS). The Houston Chronicle reports that the city could owe ATS up to $20 million in damages if they void the contract. Revenue has also been a consideration in turning the cameras back on. According to the newspaper, each year red-light camera citations are not permitted, the city's police department will lose an estimated $10 million in revenue. The news source also reports that the cameras have issued over $50 million worth of citations since 2006. Red-light camera use has never been supported by a public vote, according to The Newspaper.com. The media outlet reports that in Anahiem, California, 73 percent voters opposed the use of traffic cameras. This resulted in the city banning red-light cameras.
Posted in Government, Red Light
Jul 11th, 2011

Red light Camera Company Donated Thousands in 2010 Florida Elections

A red light camera company that operates some devices in Florida made substantial donations to politicians during the most recent election cycle Bloomberg reports that American Traffic Solutions Inc. donated $159,000 to state-level candidates and various committees during the 2010 elections, data from the Florida Elections Division revealed. The red light camera company wasn't just donating to one side of the aisle however, as the news source reports that American traffic gave $37,500 to Florida's Democratic Party and $64,500 to the Sunshine State's Republican Party. Charles Territo, a spokesman for the red light camera company, told the news provider that during the first six months of 2011, 19 cities have signed up, perhaps indicating that the thousands of dollars American Traffic spent on the election was money well spent. While we can help you contest red light camera tickets in California, citizens of Florida seem to be angry with the cameras as well. The cameras have been a source of tension for motorists around the country as the news source reports that 28 class-action lawsuits have been filed in Florida against municipalities connected with the cameras. Florida isn't the only state struggling with red light cameras as the Los Angeles Police Commission decided to let its agreement with its camera company expire. In Houston, voters last November decided to stop the use of the cameras.
Posted in Government, Red Light
Jul 08th, 2011

Red Light Camera Bill Passed; TicketKick Says If Signed Would Bring Restrictions to the Multi-Million Dollar Government Revenue Source

TicketKick, California based legal company specializing in red light camera defense awaits the effects of Senate Bill 29 which could bring some relief to drivers who are issued a red light camera notice, open new grounds for dismissal for tickets fought in court, and place restrictions on new red light camera intersections to be installed.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) May 26, 2011 Senate Bill 29, introduced in December 2010 by Sen. Joe Simitian (D-Palo Alto) was passed on a bi-partisan unanimous vote of 36-0 in the State Senate according to a recent press release by Senator Simitian's office. SB 29 would protect the rights of Californians cited by traffic enforcement cameras (red light cameras). It would require that cities using red light cameras establish policies and procedures to better ensure that citations are properly and appropriately issued, and that motorists can effectively challenge incorrectly administered tickets. Research performed statewide by TicketKick, a California based legal company, shows that hundreds of thousands of red light camera tickets are issued each year in 75 cities across California, resulting in a very controversial multi-million dollar government profit source. Their statistics show that only about 1% of people who receive a red light camera citation attempt to fight it in court. The average fine for a red light camera ticket in California is $480. Why do so many people hand over these huge fines to the court and give in to this questionable money making government system? Greg Muender, Owner and President of TicketKick, gives his on this statistic: "Most people think that since they were caught on camera and video, they're automatically guilty, and there's no way out of their ticket. That is so far from the truth," he said. "Believe it or not, most cities are not in full compliance with every aspect of the law regarding red light camera systems. If SB 29 is signed into law, it will add to the requirements set out to install, operate, and maintain red light camera systems in California, and will give us at TicketKick more opportunity to build defenses around the intersections which are not in full compliance with these new laws." According to the fact sheet of this bill, SB 29 would make it harder for the issuing agency to identify the correct driver of the vehicle cited in the photos captured by the photo enforcement system. Existing law approves of the issuing agency to send out "snitch" tickets, which are mailed to the person listed on the vehicle's registration, which asks for the correct driver to be identified so that a real ticket may be issued and filed with the court. SB 29 would require that any such "snitch" tickets be on a form approved by the Judicial Council, following consultation with the traffic and transportation committee of the California Peace Officers' Association. It would require that such notices contain the contact information of the issuing agency and the information of the manufacturer or supplier of the red light camera system. It would also require that this notice clearly state that the registered owner of the vehicle is not required to provide information on who was driving the vehicle in the photos, and that failure to provide the information would not result in additional responsibility or liability associated with the alleged violation. Of course, with any new law, there will be those who object. Opponents of SB 29 argue that hundreds of millions of dollars would be lost in government ticketing revenue, since this bill would prohibit the government in considering revenue generation when proposing to install a new red light camera system, beyond recovering its actual costs of operating the system. Red light camera systems are said to be installed with the purpose of reducing the number of accidents at intersections in which they are installed. Some studies show that in certain intersections the number of accidents have been reduced, and other studies show that in other intersections, the number of accidents was unchanged or increased. SB 29 is designed to allow the continued use of red light cameras to enhance public safety while addressing the significant potential for misuse. The measure establishes ground rules for the operation of red light camera programs to address legitimate concerns about accuracy, privacy and due process. If signed, this bill would take affect by January 1, 2013 for red light camera systems installed as of January 1, 2012. More information about SB 29, including status updates and official announcements can be found at http://www.senatorsimitian.com/entry/sb_0029_red_light_cameras/ TicketKick is a registered Legal Document Assistant in California, providing self help services in traffic ticket defense, with a similar service model of companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick works with attorneys in California in developing their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics. TicketKick's goal is to help people get their traffic tickets dismissed, and although not every customer will win their case, TicketKick offers a refund of the defense fee for most violations if their customers are found guilty. TicketKick representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. ###
Jul 07th, 2011

Los Angeles Photo Enforcement May Get Red Light- TicketKick Predicts Future of Red Light Cameras in California

As more cities see debate over red-light camera systems, TicketKick- California's leading resource for red-light camera defense- continues to amp up their legal defenses for drivers caught on camera in the 70+ cities who use photo enforcement systems, saving drivers up to $500 in fines.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) June 28, 2011 The on-going debate over whether to end red-light camera systems in Los Angeles has spurred on California legal company TicketKick to take a serious look at the future of photo enforcement in other cities in California. According to the LA Times, The LA Police Commission voted unanimously in June to end the red-light camera program, putting the city in the center of a widespread debate over the purpose of the program and the effectiveness of the cameras in preventing accidents. The city's contract with American Traffic Solutions, the red-light camera company, is set to expire at the end of July unless the LA City Counsel can receive enough votes to renew the contract. Several bills in previous years have proposed to restrict or end camera systems statewide but failed to gain traction including AB 1008 which failed passage in 2011. Many California cities have already banned or ended their use of red-light cameras including Anaheim, Fresno, Long Beach, and Fullerton, just to name a few. Recently, Napa County has been under fire for their red-light camera use when a Napa County Superior Judge ruled them illegal because the contract between Napa and the red-light camera company, Redflex, included a cost-neutrality clause which indirectly ties the amount of tickets issued to the amount of payment that Redflex receives from the city. According to Judge Diane Price in a Napa Valley Register article, State law prohibits that a contract between a governmental agency and a private company include a provision for payment based on the number of citations generated. TicketKick knows this issue with cost-neutrality all too well, and has used it in written defenses for their customers in Napa and every other city who also maintains this clause in their contract. TicketKick's founder and President, Greg Muender says that "up to 50% of cities who utilize red-light camera systems have this cost-neutrality clause in their contract with the camera company. Unfortunately, that doesn't necessarily mean an automatic dismissal because whether or not this cost-neutrality clause falls under the state guidelines as being illegal or not is entirely up to the judge's interpretation. Some judges see it as illegal and others don't." Los Angeles is one of the cities whose contract with American Traffic Solutions does not include this cost-neutrality clause in their contract. However, according to LA Times, it is costing the city to keep issuing tickets, because more and more tickets are going unpaid. Mr. Muender of TicketKick added- "It's one of those, damned if you do, damned if you don't situations where if you're financially on top like Napa, your contract is deemed illegal because of the cost-neutrality clause, but look at LA, they don't have that clause in their contract, but they're losing money." What could be the future of red-light cameras in California? TicketKick predicts they won't last forever. "We think within five years the law will be drastically changed and you just won't see them anymore, at least in California. I think our state will come up with better solutions to reduce the number of accidents at intersections, if that's the goal, of course." Greg said. "Regardless, there will always be a need to provide a low cost, self-help legal service for traffic ticket defense, whether it be for red light tickets from a camera or an officer, or perhaps even speed cameras in the future. Who knows, but we'll be here," he continued. TicketKick is a registered Legal Document Assistant in California, providing self-help services in traffic ticket defense, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick works with attorneys in California in developing their defenses, which utilize comprehensive arguments and tactics. TicketKick's goal is to help people get their traffic tickets dismissed, and although not every customer will win their case, TicketKick offers a refund of their defense fee for most violations if their customers are found guilty. TicketKick representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. ###
Jul 07th, 2011

TicketKick Announces New How-To Video- "How to Get Out of a Traffic Ticket, What to Do When You See the Red and Blue" Tackles Tough Ticket Topics

Speeding, Stop Sign, Red Light, and other common traffic tickets can be avoided by implementing some basic tips in TicketKick's new how-to video.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) April 29, 2011 California based legal company, TicketKick, helps drivers fight their traffic tickets, and has had unparalleled success with their defenses. They're also out to help educate drivers of what they can do when they get pulled over to avoid a ticket in the first place, with a new how-to video released to show drivers how to talk their way out of a ticket. Greg Muender, TicketKick's Founder and President says, "We created a video with the purpose of being both educational and entertaining, depicting a scenario of a speeder getting pulled over. At first it was just for fun, but we've actually received a lot of calls from people saying that they used these tips, and were able to get off with a warning." Research has shown that an estimated 16 million traffic tickets are issued in California each year. TicketKick has helped fight several thousands of tickets and has seen about 3/4 of tickets get dismissed with their defenses. Mr. Muender adds, "Many tickets are wrongly issued. Here in America, you are innocent until proven guilty and it's up to the officer to prove your guilt. Not every ticket can be dismissed, and that's why we've set up a money back guarantee. Nevertheless, we have seen excellent success and every ticket is worth fighting." So what are the best ways to avoid a ticket? TicketKick's short video, "How to Get Out of a Traffic Ticket, What To Do When You See the Red and Blue" gives these 10 tips: 1) First and foremost, drivers should always drive safely and obey all traffic laws. TicketKick does not endorse speeding or other violations. 2) When they see the officer behind them, they should pull over immediately on the shoulder. If they wait too long to pull over, the officer might mistake them for trying to evade the situation. 3) By rolling down their windows, turning their car off, and placing their keys up on their dashboard with their hands on the wheel, the officer will see that they are non-confrontational, non-threatening, and willing to cooperate, which may take the officer's guard down a bit. 4) They should always hold their ground and avoid saying anything that can be used against them in court. The officer will probably try to get them to admit guilt by saying something like, "Do you know why I pulled you over?" The driver should display confidence that they were driving safely and according to the law. 5) When the officer tells them why he or she pulled them over, the driver can ask for a warning. Officers are generally allowed to issue warnings, but it's up to the discretion of the officer to do so. If the driver is nice and respectful to the officer, the officer may be willing to let them off with a warning. 6) The officer will probably ask to see their license, registration, and proof of insurance. Drivers should always have these easily available to find, to avoid keeping the officer waiting. If the officer runs their drivers license and finds that they have a clean record, he or she may be more willing to let the driver off with just a warning. 7) Drivers should always be courteous and respectful to the officer, never arguing with him or her. 8) Lastly, if the officer does write a ticket, the driver should always sign the bottom of the ticket. This doesn't admit guilt, this simply means that they promise to appear on this matter. 9)They should avoid saying anything that will make them stand out in the officer's mind, in order to have the very best chance at fighting it. 10) They should keep the ticket in a safe place. TicketKick will need the ticket information to formulate defenses for it. TicketKick is a registered Legal Document Assistant, providing self help services to help people fight their traffic tickets, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick works with attorneys in California to develop their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics in traffic ticket defense. The offices of TicketKick are located in Mission Valley in San Diego, and although most of their business is conducted over the phone and on the web with customers all over the state, local customers are welcome to make an appointment to visit the offices of TicketKick and meet their team. Otherwise, TicketKick representatives are happy to offer a free consultation over the phone. TicketKick customers are encouraged to post their testimonials at Facebook.com/TicketKick.TicketKick representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. # # #
Jul 07th, 2011

TicketKick Interviewed by Local San Diego News Station on Red-Light Cameras

TicketKick, California's leading resource for traffic ticket defense was interviewed by local San Diego 6 news, aiming to inform more drivers in California of how to defend themselves when they receive a traffic ticket, and how TicketKick's self-help legal service can assist them in getting their ticket dismissed.

San Diego, CA (PRWEB) June 28, 2011 Recently, TicketKick's President and Founder Greg Muender, was interviewed by Anchor/Reporter Jim Patton of San Diego 6 news station, who presented an interest in how TicketKick's services can help people who get a traffic ticket, particularly the expensive red-light camera tickets. Mr. Muender welcomed the opportunity to talk to the local news reporter to inform more California drivers of what their options are when they receive a traffic ticket. TicketKick's interview is scheduled to air sometime in July on San Diego 6 News. TicketKick utilizes the trial by written declaration, which allows drivers to contest their ticket through the mail. They find that not many people are aware of this option, and many end up paying their ticket off before they realize they can easily contest it without going to court. TicketKick's goal is to help educate drivers of their options, and give them the tools they need to represent themselves successfully for a low cost including a money back guarantee, and with no court appearance required. Mr. Patton of San Diego 6 was keenly interested in TicketKick's success with red-light camera tickets, with thousands of tickets being issued monthly in San Diego alone and in about 70 other cities throughout California which cost drivers about $500 each violation. TicketKick's specialty lies in red-light camera defense, preparing comprehensive, customized written defenses for drivers in California who receive these costly camera tickets. Their written defenses are based on hundreds of hours of legal research and public findings on individual reports of red-light camera intersections and cities. "Believe it or not, most cities in California are not in full compliance with all the aspects of the law regarding red-light camera systems." said Greg in a follow-up interview. With red-light camera systems being the center of a state-wide controversy of whether or not cities should be operating the cameras and issuing tickets, TicketKick continues to help several hundred people every month defend themselves against these high-priced tickets, and is seeing more and more get dismissed by the courts because of legal issues within the cities' contracts with the camera companies and well researched technicalities. "We are seeing an increase of red-light camera cases get thrown out," Greg acknowledged, "and in fact, we're seeing more and more cities dump the cameras altogether, which is something to be said about the whole system." TicketKick helps drivers with other common violations including speeding tickets, stop sign tickets, cell phone tickets, and most other traffic infractions, and offers a money back guarantee of their defense fee if the customer's case does not get dismissed or reduced. In addition to helping drivers fight and win their traffic tickets, TicketKick aims to educate and inform the public with free consultations, while providing outstanding customer service to help ease the process of dealing with a traffic ticket. "It was our pleasure to interview with Mr. Patton of San Diego 6 news, because the goal here is help even more drivers become aware of what their rights are in California, and give them the tools they need to defend themselves when they are looking at fines as high as $1000 for some violations," Greg responded. "No one likes dealing with the court, and a lot of people get overwhelmed and avoid the court all-together which causes serious problems later. We make the process easy and stress-free for them so they can successfully fight their ticket and save a lot of time and money." TicketKick is a registered Legal Document Assistant in California, providing self help services in traffic ticket defense, with a similar service model to companies such as LegalZoom and E*Trade. TicketKick works with attorneys in California in developing their defenses, which utilize many different arguments and tactics. TicketKick's goal is to help people get their traffic tickets dismissed, and although not every customer will win their case, TicketKick offers a refund of their defense fee for most violations if their customers are found guilty. TicketKick representatives can be reached at (800) 580-1902, at http://www.ticketkick.com, or at questions(at)ticketkick(dot)com. ###
Jul 07th, 2011