Regional
6:16 pm
Thu March 18, 2010

Report: Limited Red-Light Camera Ban Could Affect Las Cruces

Las Cruces – The City of Las Cruces was informed of a decision by the New Mexico Transportation Commission to allow the New Mexico Department of Transportation (NMDOT) to restrict or prohibit the use of traffic enforcement cameras, or red light cameras, on any state roadway, highway or federal interstate under its jurisdiction in New Mexico.

The City implemented its traffic enforcement camera program in February, 2009 at four of Las Cruces' busiest intersections:

* Valley Drive and Avenida de Mesilla
* North Main Street and Solano Drive
* Lohman Avenue and Walnut Street
* Lohman Avenue and Telshor Boulevard

Today's decision could impact the cameras located at the Valley Drive and Avenida de Mesilla and North Main Street and Solano Drive locations. According to the new policy, the City has 60-days to remove the cameras from the specified locations.

The City will evaluate available options and alternatives, given that it received permit approval from NMDOT to proceed with the traffic enforcement camera program, and as a result entered into a five year contract with Arizona-based Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc. to administer the program.

The City received indirect word of today's commission meeting, held in Clovis, NM, two days ago and was not invited to provide comment prior to the meeting.

The cameras identify suspected red light runners and speeders by video and still photographs. Fines for running a red light or speeding through a lighted intersection are capped by state law at $100 per violation.

Revenue generated by the system is split between the City of Las Cruces, State of New Mexico and Redflex. The City's portion is used to fund public safety enhancements in the police and public works departments.