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updated: 3/7/2011 12:09 PM

Red-light cameras should stay in Libertyville candidates say

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  • A majority of the candidates running for three seats on the Libertyville village board say red-light cameras are doing the job and should stay in place.

      A majority of the candidates running for three seats on the Libertyville village board say red-light cameras are doing the job and should stay in place.
    Daily Herald file

  • Donna Johnson

      Donna Johnson

  • Nick Proepper

      Nick Proepper

  • Jim Moran

      Jim Moran

  • Drew Cullum

      Drew Cullum

 
 

A majority of the candidates running for three seats on the Libertyville village board say red-light cameras are doing the job and should stay in place.

Despite falling far short in revenue projections, the cameras at four intersections represent a safety measure that should remain, incumbents Drew Cullum, Donna Johnson and Nick Proepper agree.

Newcomer Jim Moran originally called for their removal but tempered his opinion after learning there could be a significant cost to do that.

The four candidates are running for three, 4-year terms. Responses are from a Daily Herald questionnaire and interviews.

Cullum, a financial adviser, said reduced revenue means the cameras are working to ensure safety.

"The cameras are revenue positive at any level to the village," he said. "The camera provider could decide to remove them if they aren't meeting their revenue projections after a specific contract period."

Johnson, a corporate attorney, said the cameras have increased safety at intersections where it had been a concern and are a benefit to the community.

"I think they're doing the job," she said.

Proepper, a marketing executive, does not support removing the cameras.

"As long as the cameras are revenue neutral at the minimum I will support retaining them as a safety enhancement," he said.

Moran, a sales executive, initially called for the removal of the cameras. He said there had not been any evidence to show the cameras improve safety, had not provided much revenue and created "another obstacle" for business owners to attract customers.

The cameras were installed at no cost to the village, with the company, Gatso-USA, receiving $30 for each $100 citation. The three-year contract can be terminated by mutual agreement of both parties. Cameras became operational at some intersections last May and at others in July.

Should the village want to pull the plug without the consent of Gatso, it would face a penalty of $1,000 per camera approach for each month remaining on the contract, which was initially signed for three years.

Moran tempered his stance, saying the fine to break the contract changes the urgency, and the village can't afford to spend money on avoidable fees.

He said the situation should be assessed for possible options. Should statistics show there are fewer accidents where the cameras are installed, it could be a reason to keep them, he said.

The village is mandated by the Illinois Department of Transportation to review the accident statistics of each intersection separately after a year.

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