I think that any change regarding rolling right tickets must be nuanced. If the city has directed or caused the camera company to install cameras on lanes which are used exclusively for right turns (no option to drive straight-through), the company could successfully argue that an all-out ban on rolling right tickets unfairly deprives it of any revenue from the equipment it installed on said lanes. If this situation obtains in your city, I suggest that instead of an outright ban, you enact a limit on rolling right ticketing - such as a requirement that the vehicle's speed over the detection loops (called the "trigger speed" or the "threshold speed" and typically set at 10 - 18 mph) must be in excess of 20 mph, before a right-turn ticket can issue. In this way, the camera company would still get some income from the equipment it installed to monitor the dedicated right-turn lanes. And the city would not be seen to be giving a free pass to people who race around corners at ultra high speeds.
ATS, the company running many cameras in Tennessee, has just been exposed as being behind a lot of the pro-camera comments posted online. The expose caused the suspension of an ATS VP, last Wednesday.
If you go to the website of the Everett (WA) Daily Herald (heraldnet.com) and put Kroske into the search box, the articles will come up.
But don't stop there. Kroske was just one of ATS' spokesmen. There's at least one other, and he is potentially much more dangerous. He is Mark Rosenker, former chair of the NTSB. Having retired from the NTSB he now is Senior Advisor to an ATS-supported pro-camera group. Taking advantage of his ('til now) top notch credentials, Rosenker has been granted numerous pro-camera "guest columns" in newspapers around the country in which he mentioned his current position as Senior Advisor to the National Coalition for Safer Roads but never disclosed that the NCSR is supported by ATS.
Aside from dreams of revenue, why do politicians buy red light cameras?
They think we like cameras!
A blogger addressed Astroturf Lobbying by the red light cam Industry. (To read the blog, Google Rynski and Astroturf.) Evidently, Astroturf Lobbying is when a PR firm creates an artificial grassroots movement, often via comments posted on newspaper articles like this one. The politicians read the columns and, sensing strong community support, give the OK for cameras.
They're immune to the tickets.
In California a million private cars have plate numbers protected from easy look up, thus effectively invisible to agencies trying to process red light camera violations. Such "protected plate" lists exist in other states. (In CA the list includes local politicians, bureaucrats, retired cops, other govt. employees, and their families and adult children!) Someone should check to see how many, and who, are on the list in Tennessee.
An article (headline: "Special License Plates Shield Officials from Traffic Tickets") pointed out that "in California there are nearly one million private vehicles having 'confidential' license plate numbers that are protected from easy or efficient look up, thus are effectively invisible to agencies attempting to process parking, toll, and red light camera violations." (OC Register, California, 4-4-08.) In 2009 the Register revisited the subject and reported that the legislature was extending the "confidential" treatment to even more people! Such "protected plate" lists exist in most states, including Tennessee, and many are bloated, like California's. (In California the list includes politicians - even local ones - judges, bureaucrats, and many other govt. employees. And their families! Plus such oddities as veterinarians and museum guards.) A TimesFreePress reporter should investigate to see how many, and who, are on the 'protected' list in Tennessee.
From today's article: "A five-second yellow light would be far too long, he [Van Winkle] said. It would encourage motorists not to stop on yellow and instead floor it because they know they have plenty of time before the light turns red."
As a professional traffic engineer responsible for our safety, Van Winkle has an obligation to make himself familiar with the literature on people's reactions to longer yellows, 'cause he's got it wrong.
There's all kinds of data showing that if you make the yellow long enough, you make a BIG reduction in the number of people running the light, and accidents too. A couple examples:
In Nov. 2000 Mesa, AZ lengthened their left-turn yellows (at six camera-monitored intersections) from 3.0 up to 4.0 and cut the violations by 2/3. Also significant is that the # of violations stayed down in the years after the change - it did not rebound once drivers got used to the longer yellow - they didn't "floor it," they STOPPED - because they were given enough time to comfortably do so. See the numbers at: http://www.highwayrobbery.net/redlightcamsdocsMesaMain.html
A 2004 paper about a long-term study of a Virginia intersection showed a 69% decrease in straight-thru violations when the yellow was increased from 4.0 seconds, to 4.5. (It costs next to nothing to re-set the yellows, so longer yellows can be applied all over town, reducing running at every intersection - no (expensive) cameras needed!) See the paper at: http://scholar.lib.vt.edu/theses/available/etd-06242004-230619/unrestricted/Thesis_3.pdf Figure 4.1 on page 67
Longer yellows reduce severe accidents. A 2004 study by the Texas Transportation Institute found, "…an increase in the yellow duration of 1.0 second is associated with an MF [crash frequency] of about 0.6, which corresponds to a 40 percent reduction in crashes." See the study at: http://thenewspaper.com/rlc/docs/04-alternatives.pdf Figure 2-8 on page 2-20