At Wentzville's aldermanic meeting tonight, the aldermen tabled the renewal of Wentzville's RedFlex red-light camera contract until the 29th of this February. The acting city administrator indicated that this date allowed for precious little time before a RedFlex renewal deadline. Ostensibly, some of the aldermen wanted to get more information from the new police chief about accident numbers at red-light camera intersections in town. She seemed to be a supporter of the cameras -- loosely citing conservation of officer time/resources and a possible reduction in accidents.
However, this was a point of contention among at least three of the aldermen. Specifically, Guccione and Kross indicated that they have seen many different studies calling into question the efficacy of red-light cameras. Kross cited a recent visit to a Municipal League meeting where they discussed the extension of yellow-light times at intersections as more effective tools for reducing accidents. Guccione added that he's seen where some argue accident numbers go down at red-light camera intersections, while other reports say that the amount of rear-end collisions go up dramatically. While yet another alderman referenced that some states and municipalities nationwide are banning their use.
At one point when Alderperson Kross asked, "what impact is it to the city if we don't do this?"(regarding the extension of the RedFlex red-light camera contract), a city employee spontaneously replied "REVENUE." click here fo video It seemed noteworthy that not one alderperson or city employee immediately offered up any mention of safety or traffic law obedience.
Because the issue was tabled, it is hard to know what the collective group is leaning toward with regard to Wentzville's RedFlex contract renewal. But, in light of the very recent St. Louis Circuit Court ruling which essentially voided that city's red-light camera ordinance and the statements of a few aldermen, it very well could be that Wentzville's eyes in the sky may shutter for a while.
Video -- Kross talks yellow Lights
Video -- Guccione questions accident reduction levels (sorry about the audio levels)
Oh, and Alderman Stokes noted that RedFlex Traffic System is located outside of Wentzville, Missouri along with its jobs and revenues
I must add that it is also a bit disconcerting to hear how often the aldermen refer to the need for staff to get them more information. Can the elected officials not do a little research, fact and answer finding themselves?