Back on September 10th, 2007, I stood as the spokesman for the Baytown Concerned Citizens group and spoke to the police department, our concerned citizens, city council, and with the media and pleaded with them to address the speeding and traffic violations as a top priority. My exact phrasing was "stop it by hook or crook".
The red light cameras are a direct result of this. Thus I am voting against Prop 1. I want to keep the red light cameras.
The reason people are running red lights and taking rolling turns on red lights is because they are not paying attention, distracted, and careless drivers, plus they are endangering everyone, especially children (I had to throw that in, as that is always the trump card, but true none the less).
The BCC as a whole, which it appears is not exactly the same as it was 3 years ago, is still and should be a logical approach to crime, but to some, the red light cameras are viewed much the same way a stop sign was, back in the day when they first appeared. ("What? Who says I have to stop?"). They are not taking away our rights, but are an enforcement tool and for most of us, the $75 fine is adequate enough to make us pay attention.
BPD cannot be everywhere at once, so it falls upon us law-abiding citizens to do our part and actually drive the way it was taught in driver’s education. Stop talking on the cell phone, eating hamburgers, and digging through our purses and pockets while we are driving...plus watch-out for all those people who don't and there won’t be a single violation on the law-abiding driver.
I DO NOT want to go back to the old system addressed in September 2007, where the chances are excellent that a cop is not going to be present when a red light/right turn violator runs through with impunity and make no mistake about it, that is exactly what will happen.
Take any weekday on the streets of Baytown and take the time to park and watch what goes on at any of our busy intersections and I promise you will see a constant flow of violations, even with the red light cameras.
The cameras are not the problem...distracted drivers are.