It’s official; New Jersey has ended its red light camera ticket program!
The sunset period came and went and no renewal legislation was passed. This means that red-light camera tickets are a thing of the past, at least in NJ.
In order for the program to ever begin again, the New Jersey Legislature would have to pass a new bill.
However, the likelihood of that happening is quite slim since Governor Chris Christie revealed this past summer that he would not support the program’s renewal.
The difficulties plaguing NJ’s red light camera ticket program have been well documented.
For starters, a federal lawsuit resulted in refunds to hundreds of thousands of alleged violators, and a computer glitch voided more than 15,000 tickets this year.
Likewise, in 2012, NJ had to temporarily suspend dozens of the cameras over concerns that yellow lights were not properly timed to give drivers time to brake safely before issuing them traffic tickets.
Meanwhile, these red light cameras provided a consistent source of revenue to 25 NJ towns.
At the intersection of Route 1 & Route 9 in Linden, more than 17,000 citations in a 12-month span were doled out––all costing the driver $85-$140 a piece. Also, the cameras at an intersection on Route 70 in Cherry Hill resulted in over 20,000 traffic tickets.
Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon and State Senator Michael Doherty––both outspoken critics of the program––posted statements online applauding its end.
Despite the widespread criticism, a spokesman for American Traffic Solutions (ATS)––which operated the cameras in 17 New Jersey towns––said the statistics show the program has worked.
Also, Linden Councilman Peter Brown claims the red light cameras made roads safer and changed driver behavior for the better.
Nevertheless, many others contend the cameras did not target the red-light runners who cause the most serious accidents and, instead, punished people mostly for turning right on red without coming to a complete stop.