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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments

Red-light district

When red-light cameras were being considered here, officials insisted the reason was safety and safety only. But some (including me) had doubts, considering the jurisdictions that had found them to be big revenue generators. Now comes Buffalo, being glaringly and stupidly honest:

Buffalo has already found 38 locations for the cameras, expecting to install them in "places frequently trafficked by commuters coming into the city," according to documents obtained by the News. Other documents show a strong focus on revenue.

"Why does the city not have a red light program?" asks one document prepared by the Buffalo police. "It would be worth the city's time to see if this program has reduced intersection accidents and to see the amount of revenue it has generated in other cities like Baltimore, MD."

The way money is generated is to install the cameras, then screw with the timing of the lights so that there is less time between the orange and the red, resulting in more red-light runners and, oops, more rear-end collisions as well. May the subject never come up again here.

Posted in: Our town