Brick Faces Budget Gap If Red Light Program Ends
Brick Township officials are concerned about a $500,000 budget gap that would be created if the state ends the controversial red light camera program.
The Asbury Park Press reports that the township made $1.1million from the three cameras on Brick Boulevard in 2012 and paid $640,800 in fees to American Traffic Solutions, the company that runs the cameras. The program itself came under fire over the timing of the yellow lights and allegations that it was simply a way for towns to make money.
The Press reports Brick Township issued 34,631 tickets from the cameras. Mayor Steve Acropolis says the fact that 95% of those receiving tickets did not get a second ticket.
“These cameras are about changing people’s view on driving, not about the making money," the Mayor told the newspaper.
Red Light Controversy In Edison
State Senator Mike Doherty (R) is proposing legislation that would keep revenue away from towns because he says the cameras fail on their stated purpose to make intersections safer. He is also concerned about towns becoming dependent on the revenue generated by the cameras.
Edison has come under fire recently for not releasing its data on red light cameras.
Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon is asking the NJ Department of Transportation to throw Edison out of the pilot program if the town does not provide the data. “Either they’re incompetent, or they’re hiding something,” says O’Scanlon, who believes revenue is behind the reason no figures are being made public.
“You don’t have to look very far to figure out the motivation,” he says. “This is huge money that these people, the municipalities and the companies that are operating the cameras legally are stealing from people.”
New Jersey DOT spokesman Joe Dee tells the Press a final report on the program will be issued in late 2014 that will be based strictly on safety, not revenue.
David Matthau contributed to this report