Three-judge panel rules in favor of City, Board of Education in Red Light Safety Camera lawsuit

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A three-judge panel of the North Carolina Superior Court has upheld the City of Greenville’s Red Light Safety Camera Program as constitutional.

The plaintiff in the case, Mary Sue Vaitovas, had argued that the legislation (local act passed by General Assembly) allowing the City to implement its Red Light Safety Camera Program should be voided because it was “related to health” in violation of the State Constitution’s prohibition on local acts relating to health.  

A three-judge panel determined that the red light camera legislation does not relate to health.

Defendants in the case included the City of Greenville, the Pitt County Board of Education, Phil Berger in his capacity as President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and Tim Moore in his capacity as Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Greenville’s Red Light Camera Safety Program was approved by the North Carolina General Assembly on June 30, 2016.

In March of 2017, the City entered into a cost-sharing agreement with the Pitt County Board of Education.

Greenville began assessing the civil penalties related to the use of red light cameras on November 15, 2017.

Red light safety cameras were installed at five intersections in Greenville.

They included Arlington Boulevard and Greenville Boulevard, Charles Boulevard and 14th Street, Memorial Drive and Arlington Boulevard, Charles Boulevard and Fire Tower Road, and Arlington Boulevard and Fire Tower Road.

During the first year of the program, the City experienced a 27% overall reduction in crashes at the intersections with red light safety cameras and a 16% reduction in rear-end collisions.

Additionally, there were no fatalities at the intersections with the cameras and only a 4% recidivism rate for violating drivers.

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