Results Are In: Every Camera Ban Initiative Wins

November 3, 2010

Never before have citizens groups across the country with no funding been able to slay the corporate funded, highly paid lobbyist-driven dragons. American Traffic Solutions(ATS) of Scottsdale, AZ headed by Jim Tuton spent more than $1.5 Million to try every trick in the book in the 5 cities that were voting on bans of his automated ticketing machines. He paid lawyers, lobbyists, front groups and shelled out big money to run ads in major news publications. The result? Jim and ATS lost in every city.

All 5 of the citizens groups, located in California, Washington, Ohio and Texas spent a total of $2,000 funding their grass roots efforts. What an amazing accomplishment this is for concerned citizens who registered free websites, wrote articles, utilized social media, studied data, scored media attention, gathered the necessary signatures and finally, stood at the polls all day on Tuesday earning votes.

These types of victories are unheard of and should be recognized as proof positive that citizens groups with virtually no money can actually prevail with hard work, and of course, being on the right side of a hot button issue.

Here is a list of the cities who will no longer suffer the constant surveillance and money drain of automated ticketing machines.

1. Houston, TX

2. Baytown, TX

3. Mukilteo, WA (Seattle)

4. Garfield Heights, OH (Cleveland)

5. Anaheim, CA (Orange County)

Notably, in Mukilteo and Anaheim, the citizens initiatives are winning by more than 70-30 ratios. Congrats goes out to all, but especially those two groups for their resounding victories.

Despite the widespread use of ATS cameras, Tuton and his team of lawyers and lobbyists do not have an unending supply of money. How many more of these defeats will they be able to endure? It must be mentioned that photo ticketing has never survived a public vote and Tuesday, November 2nd, 2010 was no different. It was definitely one for the record books and scored 5 victories out of 5 for the good guys.

Volunteer Opportunity – Primary Day

August 24, 2010

[Opinion] The most anti photo radar candidate in Arizona period is looking for volunteers to work at polling places tomorrow.

If you would like to help David Fitzgerald with his campaign for Arizona State House of Representatives in Legislative District 6, this would be a great chance to get in on the ground floor with a principled candidate. David is committed to ending photo ticketing in all forms in Arizona.

If interested, please call 623-340-1811 for info. The most critical times for volunteers are 6-9 am and 4-7 pm. Volunteers will be asked to reinforce David’s message at a legal distance away from the voting booths. All the details are available at the previously mentioned phone number or by emailing his campaign.

Headquarters for this effort will be set up in the Denny’s at the intersection of I-17 and Bell Road in North Phoenix.

Want to get on the action? Don’t pass this one up.

Houston Added to List of Cities Voting on Scameras

August 10, 2010

The 4th largest city in the country is going to vote on a photo ticketing ban. This can’t sit well with scam vendors Redflex and ATS. That list of cities is growing rapidly, but Houston, TX sticks out because it would be a dagger to the heart of the aforementioned fraud peddlers. covers the saga in at length in their latest article:

“The effort was able to take advantage of a high rate of voter interest and anger at the city’s red light program,” initiative campaign manager Philip Owens told TheNewspaper. “In some neighborhoods where we gathered signatures going door to door. We had a success rate of 90 percent — meaning nine out of every ten contacts signed the petition. That’s a staggering rate and shows this is a people-driven campaign.” The group now will focus its efforts on driving voter turnout in November and refuting the claims made by the paid spokesmen for ATS regarding the effect cameras have had on collision rates (view independent studies).

Also in the Lone Star State, Baytown and Port Lavaca are ready to vote on scameras. Stop Baytown Red Light Cameras turned in the needed signatures to compensate for some that were invalidated by the city. Quoted from their website,

The Arizona camera company(ATS) gets paid a bounty of 55% of each ticket collected in return for installing the cameras for free. source; Baytown Sun 3-27-10″

If it “isn’t about the money,” ATS sure has a funny way of showing it based on that last stat.

Outside of Texas, Mukilteo, Washington has won their court battle with a front group funded by scamera companies and that Seattle suburb will be voting on a photo ticketing ban.

The great state of Ohio is next on the radar screen with the cities of Garfield Heights and South Euclid, OH having their signature count validated recently. Both city councils are going to review them.

The Cleveland Camera Removal Team is still working on their petition. They are shooting for a special election in February 2011.

CameraFRAUD volunteers will be taking on Paradise Valley, where the scam started almost 25 years ago. Watching these other cities jump on the scamera-ban bandwagon should be plenty of motivation to up our own efforts.

Tonight’s Mission: Paradise Regained.

Scamera Ticket Refunds Included in City Petitions

July 14, 2010

The process of banning photo ticket programs at the city level is well under way. Petition packets have been pulled from 14 cities in the greater Phoenix area.

Unlike the state-wide initiative, the city versions will include refunds for motorists who have paid the fines for scam tickets.

Will the scamera companies be prepared to pay for their repeated violations of the US and Arizona Constitutions?

Gov Brewer Wants Future of Photo Ticketing to go to Voters

July 14, 2010

If you believe Governor Jan Brewer’s spokesman, a state-wide vote on photo ticketing is still on her wish list.

He was quoted in an article run on today:

The governor’s spokesman, Paul Senseman, said Brewer wants voters to decide the future of photo radar.

“Gov. Brewer proposed back in January, in her budget document, that this matter be put before Arizona voters to have the ultimate decision as to whether or not they’d like to continue a state photo radar system or not,” Senseman said. He said the Legislature discussed the issue, but did not put it on the ballot.

The debate over photo radar is not over, said Senseman.

“Not only will this discussion be continuing in the Arizona Legislature, it’s a discussion that policy makers around the United States, even the world, are going to continue to have.”

Brewer made the decision not to renew the contract with Redflex to run the DPS system that “goes dark” at midnight July 15th. However, there is nothing to stop a similar program from returning to Arizona highways.

From the comments given by Senseman, Brewer still wants a public vote on the matter after the citizen’s initiative did not automatically put it on the ballot. There was nothing to indicate whether Brewer would favor a vote on city-run programs as well.

South Carolina, South Dakota Ban the Scameras

June 21, 2010

Arizona continues to fall behind other states with better leadership. It’s alarming to watch our politicians stand by while states who have much fewer cameras wise up and ban them.

In South Carolina, the governor signed a bill in to law that bans photo ticketing. featured a story about it on Friday, June 19th:

South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford last week signed a law banning the use of red light cameras and speed cameras in the state. The measure swept unanimously through the House, 106 to 0, on June 3 and in the Senate 38 to 0 on June 2. – – South Carolina’s law takes effect immediately.”

Not to be outdone by the other state with the word “South” in its name, South Dakota was the next to step up and ban the scameras. This time it was judicial action that did it, which could mean more financial losses for Redflex. Again, with the report:

“A red light camera company faces being fined for running an illegal operation in the state of South Dakota. Last Tuesday, a circuit court judge ruled that Redflex Traffic Systems and the city of Sioux Falls violated state law and the US Constitution when they set up automated ticketing machines without approval from the state legislature. The question of whether Redflex is financially liable, and to what degree, will now be determined by a jury.”

Why is it so difficult for anyone with a position of power in the state of Arizona to step forward, admit this system is a complete scam and save the citizens from one more day of dealing with it? Sure, we’ve had folks in law enforcement step up and do the right thing, but they only have so much power.

Arizona truly is at a major deficit in leadership. When you go to the polls in November, first to vote for our citizens initiative to ban scameras, but also to select our next group of leaders, please choose wisely.

Anyone who didn’t do their part to ban photo radar in the state of Arizona, and mind you, there are very few who did, does not deserve to “serve the public” for another term.

Two Weeks Left!

June 16, 2010

Have you hit the 7 sheets by 7/1 Challenge yet? If not, don’t fret, there’s still time. Our

volunteers are planning a few signature gathering events for the next two weeks, including one at Chapparral Park this weekend.

Check the CameraFRAUD meetup page for more details, or better yet, make your own event.

Just remember, signatures are due by July 1st. There will be a couple more meetings to bring your sheets in, including one on or around June 30th.

If you can’t make it to either and have sheets, please PLEASE let someone know and we’ll make arrangements to come pick them up from you.

Remember, you don’t need an official time or date to collect signatures either. Just ask friends, family and coworkers to sign. Or spend an hour or two at a Gas Station, Grocery Store or wherever you can find people gathering in mass.

Let’s leave that horse trader Jay Heiler and his scameras in the dust!!

Breaking: The Redflex Freeway Cameras Are Coming Down

May 5, 2010

Just when the Arizona Summer Heat is hitting its peak, the motorists of this state will have a reason to celebrate. On July 1st, 2010 the contract between the Arizona DPS and Redflex Traffic Systems will expire and not be renewed. Redflex broke the news in a Press Release to the Australian Securities Exchange, dated May 6th, 2010.

What this means, in effect, is that 10% of the so called Photo Traffic Enforcement Cameras in Arizona will be dismantled and removed in about seven weeks. This development is very encouraging, but there is still much work to be done to ban this system state-wide, just like 15 other states already have.

Even after we all watch the freeway scameras dismantled and removed, the chance of them coming back one day will not be eliminated until the Ban Photo Radar in Arizona Initiative is approved and voted on in November.

Regardless of the spin put on this story by Redflex or DPS, know that public opinion and the efforts of CameraFRAUD and Arizona Citizens Against Photo Radar played a major role in this decision. The work of our volunteers and the voices of our supporters are vital in the effort to ban the scam. In other words, your voice has been heard loud and clear.

We found a way to make 10% of the cameras come down and we won’t stop until the other 90% do as well.

The 7 Sheets by 7/1 Challenge will continue, so let’s all keep the momentum going!

Tucson Saturday 4/17: CameraFRAUD and Campaign For Liberty

April 16, 2010

For all those lovers of freedom and liberty out there in The Old Pueblo, Campaign For Liberty of Arizona is going to school you! They are offering the renouned “Activist Boot Camp” tomorrow for $25 at HomeTown Buffet on Oracle Road tomorrow, Saturday April 17th, starting at 9 am.

Also, CameraFRAUD volunteers will be present to collect  filled out signature sheets for the Ban Photo Radar In Arizona Initiative. Even if you don’t plan on attending the Boot Camp, you are welcome to stop by, drop of your sheets and pick up new ones. Thanks a million! Or should we say, thanks 300K…. that’s the goal!

Special Message from AZ Campaign For Liberty:

Guess what: the politicians see you coming.  They know how to deal with people like you.  They don’t want to give in to people like us.  They know how to confuse you, discourage you, make you waste your time, make you go away, and if all else fails, buy you off.

Effective political mobilization is not taught at major universities.  It is not taught at think tanks, it is not taught at mass demonstrations, and it is rarely even taught by grassroots organizations, who for the most part only expect their members to send letters to legislators and send them money.

It is not taught because the political class doesn’t want you to know about it.

9 Unforgettable Photo Radar Stories of 2009

January 1, 2010

Here’s to 2010 being the year the cameras come down! But first CameraFRAUD would like to take one last look at what made 2009 a tremendous year for news in photo enforcement. Enjoy!

1. Trash Your Tickets – In December of 2008, The New Times published an article letting Arizona Motorists know that they can legitimately ignore their photo radar tickets, without any repercussions. Of course, if a process server finds you, there’s an obligation to reply. The idea of ignoring tickets was repeated throughout 2009 and soon the entire system became overwhelmed with unpaid tickets. DPS, Redflex and ATS have no solution to this self imposed problem other than to issue more tickets and increase fines. Bravo!

2. Ban Photo Radar in AZ Initiative – In January, CameraFRAUD held a press conference at the State Capitol to announce the Initiative to Ban Photo Radar Statewide. Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu was present and the first to sign. 153,000+ validated signatures are needed to put the initiative to a vote in November of 2010. The deadline to turn them in is July 2010 and we are well on our way.

3. Monkey Mask Motorist – Some may call him a scofflaw and others call him a brave dissenter. Whatever your judgment of the man is, he certainly captured the attention of DPS, Local Media and a public outraged by the photo radar scameras. His case is still pending but it’s clear that the Arizona Department of Public Safety wants to make an example out of him. They approached the flight attendant while he was at work with 37 civil traffic violations caught on camera. He maintains that he will not pay because there is no proof in any of the photos that he is the driver.

4. Sheriff Babeu Bans Photo Radar in Pinal County, Terminates Redflex Contract – In January, Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu presented the County Board of Supervisors with his reasons for terminating the contract with Redflex and ending the program. This fulfilled Sheriff Paul’s campaign promise to rid his county of the scamera system. If only other elected officials were as true to their word as him!

5. Redflex Driver Shot and Killed inside van – While on duty in April, Redflex Van Operator Doug Georgianni was fatally shot from a passing vehicle on the 101 Freeway near 7th Avenue. The shooter was quickly apprehended by a DPS officer. He had apparently acted alone. The tragedy was later politicized by DPS Lt. James Warriner who stated that vocal criticism of Redflex had led to the murder.

6. Paradise Valley Ticket Fraud – In June, one of our volunteers realized that Paradise Valley had illegally shortened yellow light times at the intersection of Tatum and McDonald in an effort to create more violations to drum up revenue. After the city was called numerous times about the short yellow times, they were forced to admit that 1,063 tickets were issued illegally. The tickets were either canceled or refunded if they had been paid. This would have represented almost $200,000 in revenue to the city.

7. 3,600 Tickets Same Day Same Court – Our volunteers were tipped off, local media was alerted and the circus ensued. By a scheduling gaffe of epic proportions, 3,600 photo radar tickets were assigned to the same down town Phoenix Civil Court for the same day at the same time. Obviously logistics and simple physics would not allow for that many people to be herded through our court system like sweaty cattle in the July heat. Somewhat predictably, the number of people who actually showed was dramatically less than 3,600, but a gigantic line of those who did formed. CameraFRAUD volunteers were on site to capture the moment and collect signatures for the initiative. After all was said and done, about 100 people who were scheduled to appear in court actually showed.

8. State Legislature Fails To Ban Photo Radar – Many proposals and bills to ban photo enforcement and end the statewide freeway contract with Redflex, but they all died for one reason or another. Representative Sam Crump, Republican from Anthem was the most vocal and active opponent of the program but his efforts alone weren”t enough. Our elected officials proved that they are more concerned with filling the state’s coffers than about safety or the public good. It is more and more apparent that it will be up to the citizens of Arizona to impose the ban. November 2nd, 2010 could be the day that happens, if CameraFRAUD and Arizona Citizens Against Photo Radar are successful in their public awareness and political activist campaigns.

9. CameraFRAUD vs Redflex Debate – In November, Shawn Dow squared off with Jay Heiler, Director of Government Affairs with Redflex, in a debate over photo enforcement hosted by the Tempe Chamber of Commerce. Heiler was the infamous Chief of Staff for Fife Symington while he was governor of Arizona. This was the first time that there was a sanctioned event pitting the scamera company with the volunteer organization. Both sides presented their arguments clearly but it was apparent from the beginning that Heiler was determined to poison the debate with his manipulative brand of corporate rhetoric and attack Shawn’s enthusiasm. Score the debate for the good guys.

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