MIAMI (CBSMiami.com) – Red light cameras were supposed to be a combination of watchdog and cash cows for cities that installed them. But, it turns out that cities like Miami which counted on millions in fines are out of luck.
According to Bloomberg News, Miami is planning to layoff some workers at least in part because the city counted on roughly $10 million in fines from red light runners. Instead, drivers caught on to where the cameras were and fines plummeted.
Instead of the $10 million the cameras were expected to bring in, the projected revenue is set to be less than $2 million, Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado told Bloomberg.
Regalado said the cameras worked, “too well.” Miami blamed the visibility of the cameras and news coverage for a 25 percent reduction in accidents and lower revenue.
But it’s not just Miami that fell into the trap of traffic cameras.
Bloomberg found that the state legislature, which approved traffic cameras last year, received $159,000 in donations to legislative candidates and committees in 2010. That included $64,500 in donations to the Republican Party and $37,500 to the Democratic Party, according to Bloomberg.
Currently, several municipalities are suing over the red light cameras. Still, other communities continue to install them and regard them as vital public safety components.