Why it’s tough to get a full ban on red light cameras in Texas

Pratt on TexasThenewspaper.com reports: “The red light camera ban that gained the support of a veto-proof majority in the [Texas] House of Representatives was gutted on Wednesday by the Senate Transportation Committee. State Senator Bob Hall (R-Edgewood) introduced a committee substitute for his version of the bill that ensures any city that wishes to continue using cameras can continue doing so indefinitely.

image: camera lens

Law enforcement by camera.

“I was all for this bill until Senator Hall laid out the committee substitute,” Arlington resident Kelly Cannon testified. “So I’m changing my stance to ‘against’ this bill. It’s deja vu, 2017 all over again.”

What Cannon needs to understand is that Hall didn’t “gut” the bill because he wants to grandfather cities using these pernicious revenue raising gimmicks, he amended his bill because, once again, there are not enough votes to outright ban the cameras.

“The Texas Legislature’s responsibility, first and foremost, is the protection of the people of Texas. That includes protection against violations of constitutional rights and protection from things that put their safety at risk. Continuing to allow the existence of photographic traffic signal enforcement systems is an abdication of both of these responsibilities,” said Senator Hall.

They ran to represent local government and local officials. That’s where they came from, that’s who recruited them, and that is to whom they give their loyalty.

Why are there not enough votes when in city after city, including in giant Houston, when given a chance voters have overwhelming voted to toss the red light cams?

Because of the same reason that meaningful property tax reform is stalling at the moment: Many state reps and senators, despite what they tell you at election time, do not represent you and never have done so.

They ran to represent local government and local officials. That’s where they came from, that’s who recruited them, and that is to whom they give their loyalty.

You’re just a lousy voter.

UPDATE: Sen. Bob Hall pulled the grandfather clause from his legislation to ban red-light cameras

 

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