The company that is providing red light cameras to Chicago is under investigation for bribery. The company, Redflex Traffic Systems, Inc., admitted that they paid the $910 luxury hotel bill for the city official in charge of its camera contract with the city and failed to inform the city for at least two years after they found out about the ethical breach. The attorneys for Redflex say that the executive vice president who did this was sent to "anti-bribery" training but failed to inform the City of Chicago until reporters started snooping around and asking questions. The implications are huge. The City of Chicago has brought in over $300 million in revenue from tickets issued by these cameras. The Traffic Safety Coalition, a lobbying group in Springfield, which helped Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel convince the Illinois Legislature to allow the city to put speed cameras in speed zones and school zones is heavily funded by Redflex. Redflex is considered the leading bidder to get the contract to install and operate these new speed cameras. According to Mayor Emanuel's budget for next year, he is counting on at least $30 million in revenue from these cameras. Reporters and other independent investigators are discovering troubling links between Redflex and people with ties to the City. Troubling ties between a deputy commissioner for the Chicago Department of Transportation and the executive from Redflex who is the liaison between Redflex and the City of Chicago. The payment of the hotel bill involved the deputy commissioner. Last year, the man who had been in charge of Redflex's contract with the City of Chicago retired and was immediately hired to a handsome salary by Redflex. Redflex denies any impropriety and insists that their internal investigations failed to reveal that anything seriously wrong occurred. We will keep an eye out on the relationship between Redflex and the City of Chicago.
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