While red light cameras remain controversial, automated devices for nabbing speeders got a unanimous thumbs down in the House.
Rep. Vicki Truitt, R-Southlake, said there's no conclusive evidence that automated devices such as cameras or radar result in fewer road crashes. Moreover, cameras could be used not just to crack down on speeders, but to go after motorists not wearing seat belts or motorists with expired inspection stickers. "At what point do you stop? What does it end?" she said.
Truitt said she has a good feeling House Bill 922 will sail through the Senate. It's sponsored by Sen. John Carona, R-Dallas.
A half dozen House members railed against the use of automated devices to go after drivers, saying they constitute an invasion of privacy and are nothing short of an attempt by municipalities to "pick the pockets" of constitutents , as one member put it.
Heated debate centered not on the automated traps but on whether the bill should be amended to include a ban on red light cameras at intersections, which House members have tried to pass in other sessions. Ultimately, the amendment was rejected on the grounds it might ruin the chances of HB 922 passing in the Senate.
Automated speed traps have been installed by at least two towns, Rhome and Marble Falls.