In yet another example of how defective our legislative process has become, a compromise on the Red Light Camera Legislation in Springfield is starting to emerge that would accomplish virtually nothing. Senate President John Cullerton has released a compromise bill after a closed door meeting with critics, supporters and red light camera company lobbyists. The only advantage to motorists in this compromise legislation would prohibit authorities from ticketing drivers who stop beyond the white line or cross walk. The bill will still allow tickets to be issued for motorists making rolling right turns. Apparently, the rolling right turn tickets were not even part of the back room negotiations since these tickets are so profitable to all parties concerned. The legislation would require police officers to review tickets before they are issued in the collar counties. In Chicago and its suburbs, officials could rely on trained technicians to review tickets before they are issued. Also, motorists would be allowed to view the violations online and would not have to pay a fee to file an appeal. All of these provisions change nothing. Most towns have violations reviewed by police officers before they are mailed out, most towns provide for motorists to view the violations online and no towns require a fee to file an appeal. Virtually all of the practices required under this compromise legislation are being practiced anyway.
So what is the purpose of passing this legislation? The more things change the more they stay the same. That's what you get when your elected representatives are allowed to make backroom deals with lobbyists and officials of the companies they are trying to legislate.
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