Montgomery to continue using speed cameras despite new law

Published: May. 9, 2016 at 11:31 PM CDT|Updated: May. 10, 2016 at 12:09 AM CDT
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MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - The City of Montgomery plans to continue using its four unmanned police cars that are equipped with speeding cameras despite a new state law that bans them.

Some lawmakers say the cameras are an abuse of power, and in April, Gov. Robert Bentley signed a law that bans them.

However, Montgomery Mayor Todd Strange said the legislature hasn't prohibited the use of the cameras in Montgomery because the city is under a contract.

"With all due respect to the legislature, Section 22 will tell you that they cannot do anything, pass a law, that would impair the existing contracts. And the existing contract that we have is a three-year contract that we actually extended in March of this year," Strange said.

Strange said the city is inundated with complaints from schools and home owner's associations about speeding, and the city will use all means possible to enforce the law.

He added that the cameras are working, and the decline in the number of tickets being issued is proof.

"We know that it's working because we started out issuing thousands and thousands of tickets. The revenue stream in the [2011-2012] time frame was in the $400,000 or $500,000 range. Today, the revenue stream is in about the $100,000 to $125,000," Strange said.

State Sen. Dick Brewbaker, who sponsored the bill, said he had never gotten so many complaints on a topic in 16 years. He also added that every member of the legislature who has constituents in Montgomery voted in favor of the bill because they were getting the same complaints.

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