Baytown, TX Ballot Measure Press Release

July 30, 2010

Baytown Red Light Camera Coalition (BRLCC)
7-30-10 www.saferbaytown.com
281-728-7220

This Friday 7-30-10 at 4pm at the city clerk’s office [the] Baytown Red Light Camera Coalition (BRLCC) will turn in to the city of Baytown additional signatures required to overcome the deficiency they claimed our petition had at last Thursday’s city council meeting.

Based on Allegations from the lawyers working for the camera company the city declared our petition to be 12 good signatures short of being sufficent. The city, as required by the city charter, has given us 10 days to make up the deficiency. We have overcome the entire deficiency with several hundred signatures to spare. We believe that by the time the count is complete we will have exceeded the original number of signatures we turned in originally, all in less than 10 days.

The outpouring of support from Citizens in Baytown has been overwhelming since they learned the city declared our petition to be short. We have been flooded with requests to sign the petition to make sure Baytown gets to have a vote on the dangerous and abusive red light camera program.

The people demand a vote! Residents were also outraged at a recent Baytown Sun article that detailed the fact that out of state corporations that profit from red light cameras contributed $20,000 to keep Baytown from having a vote while not receiving any donations from Baytown residents.

http://baytownsun.com/news/article_b7a82ca6-9790-11df-8929-001cc4c002e0.html

If the city clerk certifies our petition as sufficient it goes to the city council on 8-12-10 where they can either accept it as a new ordinance or they are required to place it on the ballot for November elections. We are allowed to turn in petitions until Monday August 2nd so we will have a petition drive over the weekend, details are at www.saferbaytown.com

Some Baytown Red light Camera facts
  • The intersection with the most cameras; Garth at West Baker. Total accidents up 11% red light running accidents up 33% and rear end accidents up 5% source; BPD TXDOT report
  • Rear end accidents which put children at the most risk up 12.5% overall at all red light camera locations. Source; BPD TXDOT report
  • 2008, the first full year of red light cameras was the deadliest year on Baytown streets in  20 years. source; city-data.com traffic statistics
  • Total crime in Baytown up 27% since cameras were installed and we were told they would free up cops to suppress crime in other areas. source; BPD website 2007-2009
  • Red light cameras net $3.4 million for city. source; Baytown Sun 3-27-10
  • The Arizona camera company gets paid a bounty of 55% of each ticket collected in return for installing the cameras for free. source; Baytown Sun 3-27-10
  • Red Light Camera tickets Decriminalize red light running. They only issue civil penalties, no worse than a parking ticket.                   source; Texas Transportation code 707.
  • Failure to pay a red light camera ticket will not result in an arrest warrant, points on the violators license, insurance or credit. Although the law allows for vehicle registration to be blocked this isn’t happening uniformly.  Texas Transportation code 707
  • Numerous independant studies including the University of South Florida Health department, the Journal of trauma and Virginia transportation institute show an increase in accidents after cameras are installed. sources on links and resource page www.saferbaytown.com
“Necessity is the plea for every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants; it is the creed of slaves.” — William Pitt (1783)

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