Back in October, fresh off of the implementation of the School Speed Zone cameras in Nassau County, the following question was asked…
‘…Could it be that beyond the safety issue this is an attempt by cash-strapped municipalities to raise revenue by going after the low-hanging fruit of speeding violations?
Not that going faster than the posted speed limit isn’t wrong, but I doubt there are many among us who aren’t guilty of this at one time or another.
So in a world where a 25 MPH speed limit is not very difficult to breach regardless of whether the driver is in a car or a truck, what segment of society is going to be hurt the most by this law that to most observers seems to be nothing more than a government money grab?
If in Nassau County the fine is $50 and the fee $30 no matter what, then the answer is that lower income individuals and families will be hit the hardest. For that reason, to me these cameras appear to be little more than another regressive tax.
A regressive tax is ‘a tax that takes a larger percentage from low-income people than from high-income people. A regressive tax is generally a tax that is applied uniformly. This means that it hits lower-income individuals harder.’ (Source)
Using a non-scientific assumption that lower-income and higher-income people are on the road approximately the same amount of time and have similar driving habits, how can this method for cash-strapped cities and towns to raise money be anything but regressive?
While slowing drivers down in neighborhoods and in school zones is an excellent goal, there must be a better or more fair way to achieve it…‘
The Speed Camera Results Are In For The First Three Months And The Numbers Are Staggering!
400,000 tickets generating $32 million in fines with a $24.4 million after-cost net in revenue that the County never would have had without them.
But the money has not been generated without extensive controversy and for once it seems the electorate may have won out!
A Happy Ending For Motorists!
Thanks to political expediency, it appears that this revenue raising experiment will soon come to an end!
In response to outrage by residents, the county legislature on Monday is expected to repeal the program that catches motorists on camera speeding through school zones. Although the legislature gave unanimous approval to the speed camera program, Republican party leaders warned GOP legislators and County Executive Edward Mangano last week that an enraged electorate would be expected to take their anger out at the polls next November when all 19 legislators are up for election. (Source)
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