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Article updated: 3/13/2013 10:48 PM

Algonquin candidates talk red light cameras

By Lenore T. Adkins

If Algonquin trustee hopeful Richard Flynn had his way, he would eliminate all three of the red light cameras in the village.

Flynn, a newcomer to village politics is seeking one of three trustee seats, along with incumbents Robert Smith, Jerry Glogowski and Brian Dianis. Dianis and Glogowski have been in office since 2005, while Smith is finishing up 20 years on the board.

Flynn made his comments Wednesday night during a candidates' forum organized by the Algonquin Lake in the Hills Chamber of Commerce -- chamber board member Steve Kaniewski moderated and there were about 10 people in attendance.

Flynn also pointed out that according to documents from the village, Algonquin is expected to make about $400,000 revenue from the cameras during the next fiscal year -- that figure is down 7 percent from the previous fiscal year.

"Those drive me crazy ..." Flynn said of the cameras. "It's nothing but a revenue maker."

The red light cameras are at routes 31 and 62, another is at Bunker Hill Drive and Randall Road and the third is at Algonquin and Randall roads.

None of the incumbents shared Flynn's view on the cameras.

Dianis said the intersections with the cameras have seen a 25 percent reduction in accidents. He also said he'd be open to removing the cameras if they were no longer needed and that the $100 ticket wouldn't be an issue if people stopped when they were supposed to.

"It's a totally avoidable fine in my opinion," Dianis said.

Trustee Glogowski would support removing the camera at routes 31 and 62, once the Western Bypass is completed and eases traffic congestion. But for now, he believes the red light cameras make a difference by getting people in the habit of stopping at red lights.

"I'd say we'd rather save lives," Glogowski said. "We are making money, but each year it's less and less, so I'm still for it."

While Trustee Smith is for the cameras, he doesn't think they should issue citations to people who turn right on red without stopping at the intersection.

"If a cop's not going to be giving a ticket, then the cameras shouldn't," Smith said.

The moderator asked each candidate a different question throughout the night. Questions came via email and from the audience. They touched on traffic congestion, the village finances, downtown and economic development and how to create more activities for seniors.

The chamber will hold another candidate's night at 7 p.m. Wednesday that will feature the candidates running for office in Lake in the Hills. For more information, call the chamber at (847) 658-5300 or send an email to info@ALChamber.com

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