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New York City gets to add 50 cameras to the 100 cameras it already has

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ALBANY - The state Senate gave final legislative approval yesterday to let some major cities, including Yonkers, Buffalo and Rochester, install red-light cameras at intersections to cut down on traffic accidents and boost revenue.

 

The plan would let the three cities and Nassau and Suffolk counties on Long Island install the cameras, which would photograph cars running red lights and send a ticket to the vehicle's owner.

 

 

Each community would be able to install 50 cameras, except Yonkers, which would get 25. New York City gets to add 50 cameras to the 100 cameras it already has at intersections.

 

The Assembly passed the measures Monday. Gov. David Paterson is expected to sign the bills into law. Cities hope to start installing the cameras later this year.

 

"It's a bill that generates revenues, but it generates revenues from people who violate the law," said state Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Martin Malave Dilan, D-Brooklyn.

 

The city councils in Rochester, Buffalo and Yonkers recently passed home-rule legislation that asked the state Legislature to adopt the measure, which is expected to bring millions of dollars in revenue to the communities through the fines.

 

The municipalities will participate in a five-year pilot program, and each local government will have to submit an annual report on the cameras' effectiveness.

 

Each violation will carry a $50 fine. The cameras will photograph the rear of each vehicle that drives through a red light. Then the owner of the vehicle would be sent a photograph of the car and be hit with the fine.

 

Statistics from New York City, which has had the cameras for several years, show that red-light violations have decreased by 40 percent to 60 percent since the cameras were installed.

 

But Assembly Transportation Committee Chairman David Gantt, D-Rochester, has for years blocked other communities from installing the cameras. He has argued that the cameras are an invasion of privacy.

 

Yet he relented this week, agreeing to approve them so long as Rochester was part of the pilot project.

 

"Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose and sometimes you have to compromise, and this is a compromise," Gantt said.

 

Assemblyman Mike Spano, D-Yonkers, said the city is getting 25 cameras because state officials determined that the city's busy intersections would produce as much revenue from fines as other places would with 50 cameras.

 

"Rather than have a proliferation of these things all over the city, which is no good for anybody, less is better," Spano said.

 

Yonkers resident Dominick Capra, 64, a retired body and fender repairman, said he supported the idea of cameras. Capra rejected the suggestion that cameras at traffic lights are a step toward the surveillance society depicted in George Orwell's book "1984," in which Big Brother watched over everyone.

 

"The way they give out the licenses here, you need Big Brother. These kids don't know how to drive," said Capra, as he sat in his car outside the DMV offices in Yonkers' Larkin Plaza. "A lot of people get away with running the stoplights."

 

Filiberto Cruz Hernandez, also of Yonkers, suggested installing a camera at the intersection of Nepperhan and Ashburton avenues.

 

By Joseph Spector

Albany Bureau • April 8, 2009

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The only time I got nailed was on Woodhaven Blvd/Union Tpke 2 yrs ago. I was going northbound on Woodhaven Blvd,I realized it after it was too late,so it wasn't a surprise when I got the ticket and the picture in the mail.

 

Better to have a red light camera catch you rather then the police. The fine will be at least double if not more,plus you will have points on your drivers license.

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Thank you NY, something good for once!

 

Maybe now we can catch these trucks cabs and limos that try to cut off crosswalks when the light is red and the "man" is lit. In NY, NJ, and PA, pedestrians have right of way in marked and unmarked legal crossing points. Even if they are crossing illegally (jay walking) they still have right of way, however the offenders if caught will of course be fined or some other such legal punishment.

 

For some reason, people think that just because they are operating a motor vehicle that pedestrians and people on bikes come second, well it just isn't true. :mad:

 

Related to but a bit off topic is people parking in fire lanes as if it's their personal parking spot. :mad:

 

Maybe they can use some of the extra $ to put even more cameras up, and put a few more cops on the street too. :tup:

 

- A

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Thank you NY, something good for once!

 

Maybe now we can catch these trucks cabs and limos that try to cut off crosswalks when the light is red and the "man" is lit. In NY, NJ, and PA, pedestrians have right of way in marked and unmarked legal crossing points. Even if they are crossing illegally (jay walking) they still have right of way, however the offenders if caught will of course be fined or some other such legal punishment.

 

For some reason, people think that just because they are operating a motor vehicle that pedestrians and people on bikes come second, well it just isn't true. :mad:

 

Related to but a bit off topic is people parking in fire lanes as if it's their personal parking spot. :mad:

 

Maybe they can use some of the extra $ to put even more cameras up, and put a few more cops on the street too. :tup:

 

- A

I think at the same time, it could reduce cyclist fatalities. I mean, you know, there are bikers who bike on the wrong side of the street, who do not have headlights, who rush into the intersection on a red. Etc... The cameras could intimidate them.

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I don't really like it. This city is turning into a Nanny State and Big Brother is always watching.

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I don't really like it. This city is turning into a Nanny State and Big Brother is always watching.

 

It works in london & most other big cities.

 

- A

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I don't really like it. This city is turning into a Nanny State and Big Brother is always watching.

 

It's red light traffic cameras, not the same kind that they have in the UK. Those cameras there ARE for the purpose of watching people, these cameras aren't.

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Jaywalking pedestrians?

 

Oh boy, I feel the Orwellian elements coming.

 

No, cars & such trying to plow through people when the walk signal is lit.

 

- A

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I wonder if these cameras are IR-filtered. If they aren't, you could have an IR LED shining brightly at your plate...it would wash it out to the camera but to the naked eye it would appear normal.

 

:P

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