Bounty Beware: Drivers Targeted in Maryland?

Speed camera loophole discussed

Are police departments offering bounties on drivers in Maryland?

Some say that's exactly what is happening in areas like Chevy Chase Village. 

An advocacy group says police departments shouldn't be able to pay private speed camera contractors money based on the number of tickets that are issued, according to the Washington Examiner.  They want to tighten a loophole they say allows such a practice.

State Sen. Mike Lenett and Del. Saqib Ali have drafted legislation called the Speed Camera Fairness Act, which would prevent vendors from making money based on the number of tickets collected, the Examiner reported.

Chevy Chase Village collects more than $1.2 million annually from its speed cameras and about 40 percent of each $40 ticket goes to the private company that owns the cameras, according to the Examiner.

The most noticeable camera is located on a six-lane portion of Connecticut Avenue that has a 30 mph speed limit as commuters enter the District.  The cameras snap a picture of a driver's license plate if the vehicle goes 11 mph or more over the speed limit.

AAA Mid-Atlantic told the Examiner that the organization supports speed cameras that are used for safety, but not to generate revenue.

State laws do not allow speed cam contractors to earn fees based on the number of tickets issued.  The Chevy Chase Police Department said they operate the cameras, but also told the Examiner that the speed cam company installed the cameras, processes the tickets and handles drivers' calls.

More Information:

Saqib Ali's Blog on Speed Cams

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