Florida Supreme Court rules against red light cameras in two cities
The court invalidated early efforts by two Florida cities to create red-light ticket ordinances. It does not affect tickets issued since a state law establishing standards for the traffic cameras took effect on July 1, 2010.
Controversy is growing over the use of automated cameras to fine drivers who enter an intersection on a red light. Critics say red-light cameras are more of a revenue-generating gimmick for local governments than effective tools for public safety.
The Florida Legislature this spring considered banning red-light programs, but a bill failed to pass. Local governments have been hotly debating their use.
Justice Barbara Pariente dissented, saying home-rule authority permitted camera operation.
It is unknown how many other communities had set up camera systems before 2010 under their home-rule powers to set municipal traffic codes.
In 2013, 77 governments in Florida used red-light cameras, according to a state analysis of the failed legislation to ban them.
The potential cost of the ruling would depend on how many drivers seek refunds.
Under current state law, cities get $75 and the state gets $83 from each camera-generated ticket, according to the legislative analysis.
The Florida League of Cities, which has argued the came