Cedar Rapids city leaders unanimously approved of the first reading of the proposed amendment to the automated traffic enforcement cameras on I-380 at Tuesday’s city council meeting.
The Cedar Rapids Police Department is asking for changes to be made to the current ordinance. One of the proposed changes calls for a court proceeding for unpaid tickets before the Iowa Offset Program takes action. Under the current ordinance, the city can collect fines from a driver through their state taxes.
At Tuesday’s council meeting, Cedar Rapids Police Chief Wayne Jerman reaffirmed that the money from the fines would be used to hire ten police officers and a program coordinator to process municipal infractions. The department says a report shows when the cameras were issuing tickets, they saw a monthly average of 3.22 crashes. The report goes on to show that since the cameras were deactivated in 2017, the number grew to 6.78 crashes per month.
David Beer, the owner of Five Seasons Auto Rebuilders, says while he doesn’t want the cameras to be reissuing citations again he does understand the need for more police officers.
If the amendment is approved, the cameras would be reactivated on June 1st at midnight, issuing warnings. There is a 30-day grace period, before the cameras start issuing actual citations on July 1st.