EAST NORWICH, L.I. (CBSNewYork) — The debate rages on over red light cameras.

One Long Island man recently received 20 tickets all at once. He says he never knew he had to stop twice at an intersection to make a legal right turn on red.

The newest red light camera intersection at Route 106 and Northern Boulevard is causing confusion in Nassau County due to a stop sign and limited visibility.

“So you’re not even going to attempt a red light turn,” CBS2’s Jennifer McLogan asked Elizabeth DeAngelis of Oyster Bay Cove.

“Nope, will stay right here til it turns green, and save myself a lot of money,” DeAngelis responded

Driving to Sagamore Hill to a local steakhouse, a busy strip mall or rushing to work from the North Shore, outraged drivers have joined a social media campaign to demand fair change and fair warning.

“We all work on this row here we are getting several tickets — like this guy, he just stopped but he rolls — look! — he will get a ticket,” said Patricia Santella, an East Norwich realtor.

“106 and 25A is a major intersection,” says Nassau County Legislator Josua LaFazan. “My constituents are trying to safely inch up to make sure they have an angle of vision.”

Lafazan says tickets are tardy, issued weeks following the infractions.

“Took them a month and a half to send me this first ticket,” said Patrick Halpin, a driver from Locust Valley. “And in that month-and-a-half period, I managed to get six more with a $150 fine on each of them.”

Those $150 fines are split three ways: $50 to the county, $50 to the state and $50 to the Arizona company that supplies the cameras and processes the paperwork.

Front-end collisions and deaths are down, but rear-end crashes are up about 30 percent.

“Because I don’t want to get any more of these tickets and I’ve got people really blowing their horn at me so I am just hoping I don’t get hit from behind,” says Halpin.

Eileen Flores posted a tiny message on that stop sign outside her office

“You might want to make a bigger one now?” McLogan asked.

“Yes, but they should also put up a sign,” Flores responded.

Those who got a red light camera ticket are lobbying for a forgiveness program. They will pay for ticket number one, but not the hundreds or thousands in fines and fees that follow.

They’re taking their fight to the Nassau legislature. If red light cameras are truly for public safety, they complain, then don’t wait 40 days before mailing the tickets.

The light is state controlled since it is on two state roads. Both the county and the state say they will look into the complaints.

  1. The purpose of red-light cameras is to exploit the systematic failure in the engineering of the yellow light. Engineers set the yellow to one half the time it takes the average driver to stop. For turn lane yellows, it is even less than half the time. There is no debate about red-light cameras: the goal is to blame drivers for engineering failures so that Nassau County can make money. The word is racketeering.

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