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Poll: Residents don’t favor red light cameras

Posted on Sunday, May 20, 2018 at 6:00 am

By Brian McBride
Although the Florida Supreme Court recently ruled that red light cameras were justified in the state, a majority of Osceola County residents disagreed, according to a poll.
In the latest News-Gazette Sound Off Osceola question, readers were asked: What do you think of the red light running cameras in Kissimmee/Osceola County? Give us reasons why they should stay or go.
Overwhelmingly, readers wanted them out.
“They are horrible. You’re always afraid your gonna get a ticket because half of the time they do not work right and you’re slamming your breaks on,” one person wrote.
Another reply stated, “I think the red light cameras are more of a danger than helpful. Too many people are more worried when the light will change and it becomes a hazard because they are not concentrating.”
One reader believed the cameras were bad for tourism.
“Red light controversy can ruin Kissimmee’s reputation among tourists here in the most popular destination in America. I think that Thomas Jefferson would agree with me that the red light cameras are unconstitutional.”
But the state Supreme Court recently ruled otherwise. It had to decide whether an outside company could review the photograph of the offender. An opinion written by Justice Barbara Pariente stated that the Florida statute indeed allows municipalities to use a vendor to review the photos.
Both the city of Kissimmee and Osceola County use red light running cameras and use a law enforcement officer to review the footage and decide whether an offense was committed.
According to the law, the owner of the vehicle will receive a violation letter, which will include a link to the website, which shows a copy of the violation and also explains the appeal process.
This will result in a penalty in the amount of $158, if paid within 30 days of the violation. Afterward, a uniform traffic citation will be issued and the amount will increase.
“They need to be done away with,” another person stated. “Sometimes you get caught in no man’s land and can’t stop. And you could receive a ticket for something you could not avoid.”
However, a few replies submitted to the News-Gazette supported the cameras.
“I have seen enough of bad Florida driving habits in my 2 years here. People in Florida think a red light is a suggestion, not an actual law,” one person wrote.
Another comment said, “If red light cameras save one life, they are well worth it. If you don’t want to pay the fines, put down your phones and pay attention to the road!!!”
A new Sound Off Osceola question will be published Thursday. To make your opinion heard, see the Viewpoint page or go to www.around