New Red Light Camera Laws Coming?


A bill has been submitted in Albany to dramatically increase the number of red light cameras as well as the fines associated with such tickets. The bill would expand the Red Light Camera Traffic Safety Program to include the cities of Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse and Yonkers as well as Nassau and Suffolk counties.  It would also eliminate the 100-intersection cap on the number of intersections in which cameras can be installed.

The bill would also increase the maximum fine from $50 to $100 for each violation, and statutory authorization for red ligth cameras would be permanent.

Since red light cameras were first authorized in 1993, law makers claims that they have played an integral role in reducing the number of violations (40%-60%) at intersections being monitored and as well as injuries at monitored locations.   However, there are many studies which contradict this efficacy of red light cameras.

In any event, there can be no doubt that politicians will approve the bill for a different reason … money.  The expansion is estimated to raise $100 million to $233 million per year for New York City and approximately $50 million for the other eligible cities and counties combined.

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12 Comments. Leave new

  • It is evident to me that the only reason for this devices is Money revenue to the county, there is no question about it, each of these devices is anywhere between 30 to 50K, and they legislation claims that by installing them, will reduce the number of accidents and violations? so how is it that these devices will get paid for?
    Enough with the Blood sucking laws, we citizens pay for everything there is to pay for, from our taxes from work to the day we die and even after that.
    This devices do not reduce accidents, in fact they may increase the risk, since one have not idea when this the light will turn yellow and a second later turned red.
    The claim of the devices been synchronized to the 30 or 35 MPH speed is bogus, because that kind of math does not take account of traffic and other factors that may unable you to either continue or stop once the light change.

    • Mr. Ed,

      I cannot disagree that the devices are huge money generators. Unfortunately, they are here to stay and being extra careful at intersections that have the red light cameras is your best option.

  • I downloaded a special points of interest database listing all speed and red light cams for all 50 states as well as Europe (The UK is riddled with speed cams as well as other countries) for my Garmin Nuvi GPS. When I approach one of these things within 500ft, my GPS sounds an alarm and shows me exactly where the device is to give me enough time to adjust my speed to avoid running a red or getting caught on a steady yellow. If you own a Garmin GPS, you can find this file by doing a Google search, but you will also need to download the free POI loader from Garmin’s website to upload the speedcam POI file to your GPS via your PC’s USB connection. Many radar/laser detector manufacturers have started implementing this technology into their products using GPS coordinates of well known speed and traffic cams, but these devices are quite expensive, but if you already own a Garmin GPS, you can preload the POI file and you’ll know exactly where every cam is located before you even see it visually.

  • Are the laws regarding red light cameras written into the laws of the State of New York? If so, where can one research and read these laws? What is the chapter and verse to these laws? Thank you.

    • Bernie, I don’t know the answer. I assume that you have a state law authorizing them but local regulations implementing them. Currently, only New York City and Nassau County have red light cameras.

  • Then we need to get the “tax and piss your money away on bs social program” democrats out of office because they’re the ones who primarily have this mentality that they need to oversee every aspect of our lives and tax us for just breathing. I’m surprised that AZ, being a republican dominated state, has Scottsdale overrun with those speed cam vans to generate money for the state, and now our incompetent and corrupt idiot governor her in NY, David Paterson, wants to implement speed cams all over the state to generate revenue when what we really need to do is raise our pathetic speed limit to 65mph or more because nobody drives 55 or 55 anyway.

  • The political thieves hard at work again to do the will of the people- scratch that- hard at work stealing people’s hard earned money to squander on the states two corporate jets, and other “important” items that the politicians need to rule the little people. Pay ! Pay up! You work FOR US!

    No representation, no decomcracy- just pure plain thieves-

    • Fed Up,

      These red light cameras are a boon to cash-strapped municipalities. We need to elect politicians who are fiscally responsible so these such revenue raising initiatives are not necessary.

  • Another thing I’d like to note… how they reprogram the timing of the lights in NYC to shorten the yellow light duration to something even worst than it is now to basically entrap people into running red lights and getting caught on the cams. How is this supposed to prevent accidents at intersections when drivers will be slamming on their brakes and potentially ending up in rear end collisions? I’d like to get the insurance industry’s take on this because we will surely see an increase in rear end collisions at interstions when people know that they are monitored by red light cams. Does Albany care about this? I don’t think so!

  • Illegal or not, almost everyone I know is purchasing these special plastic diffraction shields to place over their license plates that make the plate visible from head on, but obscures it from angles above, thus thwarting the traffic cams and photo radar. As long as the plate is visible from head on to other traffic, one can get away with it, but the traffic cams get a blurry image. I’m not condoning running red lights, but there are times that you just happen to go through a yellow and the light changes red midway through the intersection and that’s when they snap you on the cam. Happened to my dad a few times and it’s virtually impossible to beat in court when they have photo evidence of your plate.

  • Matt
    Are you surprised by this pending legislation?

    Can you fight a red light traffic ticket and win? Or is it one of those tickets to pay quietly, without a fuss?

    Love your blog. Very educational.

  • Wonderful. Just what we need. More intrusion into our privacy and another source of govt revenue. Hey, at least they aren’t raising the state income tax rate in NY….jk


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