Photo Courtesy of Bobby Stone
No matter what your thoughts are on the local red light cameras here in Longview, WA (or anywhere else in the world) here are the facts in our area:
* Voters turned down this idea 2 times before the city council decided to do it anyways
* Even after the city council did install and start using the cameras the citizens of Longview signed a petition to reverse the idea of the cameras and get them taken down. Which the city council has agreed to only take as advisory and will not have to act upon it.
* The city of Longview rents these cameras from a private camera company. They are in at least a 12 month contract for the cameras and the rent is set at 57,000 a month.
* Longview has lost money so far but expects to make it back over the long run.
* Check out the Daily News website for more facts and information on this matter at the link below.
So now that you have the facts here are some opinions I grabbed off Facebook (were using random letters to let you know when different people are talking but still protecting privacy).
Either way I would say there is a resounding pattern I notice here which is people mostly agree that our elected politicians, even locally, are in it for themselves.
But more importantly, What do you think?
Red Light Cameras in Longview. Any opinions? Facts? Jokes? Just curious if anyone cares about this…..
JP In my opinion, people shouldn’t run red lights.
JP: 1. Because it’s illegal, 2. Because it is dangerous, 3. Because now they will have cameras that will catch you.
BK: Hmmm interesting. I’m not so convinced it’s that black and white but still I’m glad you actually have an opinion on the subject.
BD: They aren’t 100%, not to mention they’re putting people out of work.
BD: Dumb idea, big waste of money.
BK: Also interesting. And it is a proven fact they have lost the city money. Longview pays out almost $60,000 a month renting those things.
ZA@BD: how is a camera putting someone out of work? if anything someone has to go through them now lol?? longviews money hungry though @JP i agree with your 3 thumbrules
JP: Are they reporting less red lights being ran? Or are they trying to ticket more people? I am not sure that money is the issue; it is preventing people from running through a red light.
BD: The camera’s are replacing Police Officers… that’s how. For 60,000 a month, they could hire 5+ police officers for the city.
JP@BD: not even birth control is 100%
BD: You truly believe it’s about red lights? It’s about money, like everything else.
JP: And I am sure they would prefer that police officers bust meth addicted people, not get stuck doing traffic stops
ST: i feel we got jipped. We didn’t vote them in. they can’t do that. Theres a petition going around to have them removed.
JP: Raise your hand if you like being pulled over, I’d rather get a ticket in the mail
ZA: but that’s not even putting people out of work thats using a budget on tools? nobodys lost jobs because someone had to put up a camera? i agree in the sense it’s about money obviously everything is. but i dont think they PUT anyone out of work
BK: I guess the way I see it is that Birth Control isn’t made manditory by the city though. When did having the ability to make a personal choice go out the window, whether its breaking the law or something simple.
JP: I do agree that $60k a month is excessive
BK: I tend to agree with Brock in that most things, especially political issues can tie back to money
BD: By “put people out of work” I don’t mean people being fired… with unemployment the way it is, they should be doing anything that promotes jobs.
JP: Police officers make 60-70k a year, they could employee 10-12 more officers to crack down on traffic stops.
JP: The idea is good, but it isn’t practical.
ZA: you expect them to pay out a salary with that? 60k a year would employ one officer.
BD@ZA: it’s 60k a month kid.
BK: We also definetely didn’t vote them in. In fact we voted them out and said no way 2 times. Then they did it anyways. Now they are saying they will only make our petition advisory. So even if we vote it out a third time they will only take the advice and do it anyways. Seems like a break down in the system when city council just starts doing whatever they feel is best. Isn’t that for us to decide
JP: I am guessing that the cost for renting the cameras is probably 5-10k a month and they are using the rest of the money else where
ZA: im saying 60k a month is not a solid number,, who the fuck said that
BK@JP: they published the cameras are costing the city 57000 in rent a month. Thats a fact.
JP: Yeah, I don’t doubt that is the reported cost.
JH: im not a big fan of the cameras because the person who owns the car shouldnt be responsible for paying a ticket that someone alse got while driving the car. i got one in the mail issued in my name when it wasnt me. they dont care about that. the ticket goes to the owner of the car.
ZA: i dont think 60k a month for cameras is a LEGIT figure. fuck that shit longview has a broke ass budget already who actually believes this shit?
JP: But what they publish is a figure, I doubt they will use all of that money towards cameras. Politicians are shady
BD: Lmao, Longview has 50,000 people paying taxes, 60k is well within Longview’s budget.
ZA: it might be, do you have proof that they actually spent it there though is what it comes down too
BK: No I’m saying they are paying this company that amount of money. Our money lol becuase their money is our taxes at work. When did they get the ability to just spend it the way they please? Especially spend it on something we directly said no to. Personally I think we need to be a little more black and white with city council. If you go against the voters it should be a crime.
JP: How far would 60k go in schools these days
BD: No doubt James. They’re cutting the Auto Shop class at Mark Morris because of “budget cuts”.
BK: No thats a great point but isn’t 57000 a month a large enough number we shouldn’t just let them put it wherever. I guess it all comes down to your values. Schools would be a great start, maybe roads? I hit a pot hole so big yesterday it broke off my hubcap.
MF: half the police force sits at starbucks chattin it up during the night….. atleast the cameras are doing there job (;
BK: Also the are getting rid of 16 teaching positions next year due to budget cuts. I’m just saying I think there are some serious issues here.
MF: not saying our police are bad just kind of a funny thing me and my friends notice
BK@JH: I agree but personally that just shows me that it is primarily about money and not necessarily about doing the right thing. They don’t care who they catch breaking the law just that they catch someone and have the ability to fine them.
JP: If the ticket for running a red light was $275, the lights would have to catch 7 people a day running red lights. Just to break even.
JH: your right bob the roads around here are getting pretty torn up. some road work would be a great way to spend some of that dough. and schools for sure
BK: I just think at this point there is so much controversy and the city council is pushing these cameras so hard on us that we really need more transparency in this issue and need to make sure this is all done with the citizens in mind and not… the city councils pocket books, if thats what is happening. Either way I can’t forget that we voted these out 2 times and they did it anyways, and now were fighting it and they are still saying we are going to do what we want. Sounds pretty corrupt to me.See More
MB: I say BSSSSSSS! and get this…my landlord is in the city council and voted FOR the cameras! Ugh
BK: you should post up her address and phone# so we can all contact her asking what gives her the right to go against the people who put her in power in the first place. Or at least give her some real opinions from the people this is affecting which is all of us. If City Council won’t listen to our votes and petitions we have a serious problem.
MB: Its all a little too BIG BROTHER for me…..
BD: I say we have a riot… pitchforks, shovels, and all!
BK: Another great point. If for some weird reason they needed to regulate who was using the road this would be a great way. Gives the city a lot of power on who is using the streets. For example if they didn’t want you out after a certain time …they could fine anyone using the main roads. Seems extreme but weirder things have happened and we need to know what the true motive is here. Which again I ask why are they doing this even though we are screaming we don’t want it!See More
MB: A slippery slope…I agree! Where does it end?
BK: I think a riot for the right reasons is sometimes the only thing that will make sure the people we appointed actually have us in mind and know that without our support they shouldn’t have any power at all.
BH: Dude, I’ve always wanted to be involved in a riot… a not so violent one of course. Back in the old days when the Government tried to play King, the people just overthrew them with force.
BK: Honestly I’m surprised there hasn’t been anyone just go out as a voting citizen and take one or all of them down and leave them out in front of city councils doorstep. No cameras, no issue. Not sure if its that simple though.
BK: Thats excately right Brock. In fact our right to bear arms is given to us so we have the ability to rise up against the government in case they become to corrupt. Its written that way in our constitution.
BK: Ok so you obviously didn’t read any of the discussion before posting your opinion on the matter. I will give you one more chance to look into this issue a little more before you just try and make a point that we’ve already dis credited. And… the real issue is they are directly going against voters, who are us. They don’t care what we think about the issue and thats wrong becuae they are there to represent the people who voted them there in the first place.See More
LC: agreed. and I didn’t read the comments, I wasn’t about to read 55 comments. I probably shouldn’t have added input as well. apologies. I was just going off of a news paper article I read about it months and months and months ago.