The Arizona Department of Public Safety (DPS) recently announced
that the agency will not renew it's contract with Redflex Systems in which the photo radar cameras on valley freeways will come down in July when the contract expires.
However, the decision to do this is not permanent.
At a local Libertarian Party meeting I attended on Monday, the county party Chairman stated that sources he knows inside the Arizona Legislature point out that this move to take down the cameras is temporary.
Legislative sources allege it is being done in hopes of taking the wind out of the sails
of a state-wide initiative
that will ban the use of them and will go on the ballot for Arizona voters in November should the campaign get enough signatures.
Another indication of DPS's move being temporary is talk radio station KTAR quoted DPS Director Robert Halliday in an interview yesterday in which he said
photo radar cameras could make a comeback.
I also found out from someone yesterday whom I work with who said he heard on KFYI radio that Redflex may sue the state for breach of contract because the company was guaranteed a certain number of cameras to be erected.
If what my coworker said is true, overall, I don't see how Redflex could win such a suit since DPS is opting to not renew its contract. If the state agency cancelled its contract with Redflex before it was due to expire then the company might have a case.
Also, Redflex is the subject of a lawsuit
by a local competitor, American Traffic Systems, alleging the company lied about it's camera equipment meeting contractual certification requirements.
If Redflex is found to have lied I would imagine that would negate any contractual agreement they had with DPS because the company could and would probably be held liable by the state for knowingly falsifying the certification of it's camera equipment.
Despite the state's move, Arizona cities (such as Phoenix and Mesa) still have red light cameras while others are enacting new programs.
Surprise, Arizona, for example, started erecting
red light cameras at city intersections this month.
None the less, I will take the photo radar contract cancellation as a victory and am proud to have helped contribute to photo radar's, albeit temporary and symbolic, demise on valley thoroughfares.
I will gladly vote to ban photo radar cameras being used on state highways and freeways if the ban on them makes it to the ballot in November.
I will also undauntingly continue with my efforts to help undermine this public-private boondoggle on the city level too.