St. Petersburg state Sen. Jeff Brandes, long a staunch critic of local governments installing red- light cameras, vowed this week to reject any legislation that would expand the use of the enforcement by camera of traffic infractions.
Brandes was moved to declare his opposition during a discussion at a Friday meeting of the Senate Transportation Committee. A conversation between Mark Reichert of the Department of Transportation and Baker Republican Sen. Greg Evers turned towards whether or not surveillance cameras placed along Interstate 10 in North Florida could ever be employed to catch speeding motorists.
“I know some states up in the Northeast are looking into that,” Reichert replied. “The discussions, as far as I’m aware, have not been taking place in Florida.” “Let me put your heart to rest; not while I’m chair,” Brandes intoned, preempting any further discussion on the matter.
Red-light cameras are less popular than a few years ago when they were all the rage, especially in many South Florida municipalities, but Brandes was always on the tip of the spear. He introduced legislation to do away with them altogether in both 2013 and 2014.