20 Aug 2014
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Are You Fed Up With Montgomery County Speed Cameras?

State Delegate Jon Cardin seeks to root out bogus citations.

Are You Fed Up With Montgomery County Speed Cameras?

A state delegate from Baltimore County says public confidence in speed cameras has deteriorated to the point that a state audit and possible reboot are needed.

Del. Jon Cardin said Monday he plans to sponsor a bill calling for an audit of state and local speed camera tickets with an eye on rooting out bogus citations.

"Maybe it's time to go back to the drawing board," Cardin said.

The Baltimore County Democrat said he is in the process of drawing up a bill that would create an audit due to legislators by October 2013. Instances of bogus tickets issued to drivers would result in a $1,000 per incident penalty, though it is not clear if the jurisdiction or the speed camera vendor would be responsible for the fine, Cardin said.

"I'm not trying to put people out of business," Cardin said. "I'm concerned with trying to create a system that is accurate and keeps people safe."

Cardin said he would like to see judges throw out tickets when it's not clear that the driver was speeding. He stopped short of saying he would include language in his bill that would freeze speed camera programs used by the state, Montgomery, Baltimore and Howard counties and Baltimore City. 

Cardin's news conference came a day after the Baltimore Sun reported that some counties have no way for drivers or judges to determine if the car pictured was actually speeding.

While cameras are located in a variety of areas, Montgomery County allowed their use in school zones and work areas three years before a statewide law was enacted.

In Montgomery County, speed cameras take a series of photgraphs to document vehicles traveling at or above 12 mph higher than the posted speed limit. The owner of a vahicle deemed to be in violation will recieve a $40 citation (but no points), as well as copies of the violation photos, and the noted speed of the vehicle.

Montgomery County laws do provide a method for drivers to appeal their citation in person at Maryland District Court. 

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