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Weighing in

A weekly look at reader comments and reactions to the news

Spokane’s controversial red light cameras have generated more than $400,000 in traffic fines during their first year but have failed to reduce the number of accidents or injuries, which supporters said was the primary goal. Readers found that troubling, as this sampling of comments shows. You can find complete coverage of this and other issues, along with the full comments from readers, at

PlanB: The data shows that these things do little or nothing to improve safety, and may just as likely increase accidents. Why they were ever approved is bizarre. And most of the revenue doesn’t even come back to the city, but an outside organization. What a stupid waste of time and resources.

Spokanada: They will use the same excuse next year if the number of accidents increases to 48 in 2010. Then in 2011, accidents might decrease to 47 and they will hail the program as a success.

Screwball: It has nothing to do with safety. If they cared about our safety we would have seen some accountability in the (Otto) Zehm case. It has to do with money plain and simple. They will come up with many plans to make more money while telling us it is for safety.

Bdr: These cameras don’t work in Beaverton, Oregon, either. Beaverton installed hundreds of these cameras … due to the runners. (All they’re catching now is multiple abusers with no plates or driver’s license).

Barcroft: It’s all about the bucks, and (Mayor) Mary (Verner) knows it; any remark in a storm. These silly camera laws are written for the same reason as ALL traffic laws: revenue generation.

Spok: Something is wrong when the city sucks up $419,000 of citizen money to fund $103,000 of city budget, for whatever purpose, traffic calming or otherwise. This is not an efficient use of the region’s resources.

Verbal: So, will the council and mayor do the right thing for its citizens and public safety and remove the red light cameras, or will they keep the cameras up so they can get a few extra bucks? Any tally on the number of police cars that have been caught on a “rolling red”?

Vekleth: There is the same argument in Australia about red-light and speed cameras as being a revenue spinner for the local/state governments. If people slowed down, or stop running red lights, then the revenue dries up, and having the camera becomes less cost effective and reduces the revenue. In short – people have the choice as to whether the camera actually raises revenue for the governments.


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Getting There: Spokane is booming. Time to figure out parking.

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