Reporting Marcia Kramer
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) -- There’s a new war between Mayor Michael Bloomberg and state lawmakers over more red-light cameras on New York City streets.
The mayor wants to “out” every lawmaker who won’t green light city plans for more of those “eye in the sky” ticket givers, reports CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer.
Bloomberg loves his red-light cameras, and why not? The 150 he has brought in a whopping $52 million last year. What he doesn’t love are Albany lawmakers who won’t let him install more. So on Monday he proposed a way to bring them to their knees.
“We can put cameras on every single intersection. You just can’t use them. Maybe what we should do is do it and start publishing in the paper list of the senators and assemblymen who keep us from having cameras,” Bloomberg said.
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Apparently he thinks the embarrassment or voter anger might help round up the necessary votes. He said red-light cameras save lives — the people who get hit by motorists running red lights.
“Every time there’s somebody hit it would be nice to say, okay, assemblyman and senator so and so didn’t think that person’s life … these are the lives of our people we’re talking about,” Bloomberg said.
The mayor made the proposal at a press conference attended by a number of state lawmakers.
Kramer asked Democratic State Sen. Daniel Squadron of Brooklyn if he’s in favor of the idea of embarrassing lawmakers to get them to support the idea.
“Look, the number one factor with these cameras is privacy, so when you start talking about the scarlet “A” I think that’s a very different thing than increasing the number,” Squadron said.
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Added Republican Sen. Martin Golden of Brooklyn, “I don’t know whether that’s the right way to go or not.”\
And if you are one of those motorists who have received a red-light ticket in the mail the prospect of 40 or more new cameras really isn’t inviting.
“Terrible! I get tickets all the time because of that,” said Marcel Saline of the Upper East Side. “I think it’s not right.”
“Not good. I don’t want any more tickets,” added Ruben Correa of Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.
“I’ve seen people just run the light for the hell of it or are just impatient, so I’m for it,” Mark Thompson said.
And it’s not just red-light cameras the mayor loves. He also embraced the idea of putting in more cameras to nab speeders. The mayor said the technology is good because it frees police officers to do others tasks.
Do you think red light cameras and/or speed cameras are fair? Sound off in the comments section below!