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Ohio Supreme Court strikes down traffic cam restrictions

Ohio Supreme Court strikes down traffic cam restrictions”

But two OH legislators question whether the Supreme Court ruling affects townships and villages, or just cities whose charters explicitly give them home-rule powers. "I think police officers are paid to do a job not cameras that aren't reliable", said Pamela Smith of Cleveland at a gas station just off of I-71.

Justices ruled today that the 2015 state law infringed upon the authority of municipalities without serving an overriding state interest.

The justices voted 5-2 in a ruling Wednesday that should secure Toledo's use of stationary red light and speed enforcement cameras.

State Rep. Tom Patton, a Strongsville Republican who has long opposed red light and speed traffic cameras, and was "surprised and a bit disappointed" by Wednesday's ruling. Officers sometimes sit in a shack near a traffic camera there. "There's no way the state can order a city to comply with a law the highest court in the state ruled unconstitutional".

For more than 2 years, OH law required traffic cameras to be manned by a police officer. The cameras will go into use at the beginning of the school year. But amid state lawmaker efforts to restrict their use, and in the wake of a scandal involving the city's former red light camera vendor, Columbus got rid of them.

"I'm a strong proponent of safe driving, and I believe police officers are the best deterrent to bad driving", Patton said.

Trustees Chairman Stanley Nudell said he's pleased with the township's current camera use and would oppose adopting unmanned cameras. Together, these five made up the majority in the case, with Justices William O'Neill and Pat DeWine dissenting. Law enforcement officers are no longer required to witness the traffic violation.

"There seems to be a distaste in the Ohio General Assembly for these speed cameras".

Dayton police, whose use of traffic cameras goes back almost 15 years, had resumed this year using officer-manned fixed cameras at certain sites, saying traffic crashes had shot up after camera enforcement halted.

Attorney General's spokesman Dan Tierney said Wednesday the case couldn't be appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court because it involved a exclusively state law.



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