- Associated Press - Sunday, April 10, 2016

LYNNWOOD, Wash. (AP) - Lynnwood is rethinking its use of traffic-enforcement cameras even though the devices account for about 5 percent of the city’s annual revenues for the general fund.

The current contract with a vendor expires in November, and the City Council will have to vote on whether to renew it, city spokeswoman Julie Moore told the Daily Herald (https://bit.ly/1S3L2Ud).

Lynnwood is the only city in Snohomish County to use cameras to catch traffic law violators. The cameras have brought in $19.2 million since going live in 2007. About $5.8 million of that went to the vendor, American Traffic Solutions.

Mayor Nicola Smith said she hasn’t heard a lot of complaints, but some people said they’d never visit the city again.

“We need to get this on the council’s plate so that we can have a discussion about the usefulness of them and how much they do cost versus how much we bring in,” she said.

The city needs to determine the program’s efficiency and how many officers it would need on the streets if it eliminated red-light cameras, Smith said.

Officials initially thought revenue from the traffic cameras would decline each year, but instead it has increased. The cameras brought in $2.4 million in 2014 and nearly $2.8 million in 2015.

“Anecdotally, we know we’re seeing more traffic,” Moore said. “I think in the future we’re going to be pulling traffic counts to see if we have an increase in people traveling through our intersections. We don’t know if there’s a correlation or not.”


Information from: The Daily Herald, https://www.heraldnet.com

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