A California community says it will donate revenue generated by the city’s red light cameras to charity to prove that the program is not a way for the town to raise money.
Officials from Murrieta, Calif. say the money paid in fines—which can reach $400—imposed on motorists photographed committing an infraction at an intersection with a red-light camera might be provided to local charities that apply for federal Community Development Block Grant money, which the city council allocates.
If Murrieta donates the fine money to charity, it will be to prove that the cameras were not deployed by the city “to make money,” and that photographing motorists committing infractions is “a safety issue,” said Mayor Randon Lane.
The idea of donating the fine revenue to charity was proposed by Murrieta Councilman Rick Gibbs when the city council approved expanding the program from three intersections to five. Gibbs says he made the proposal to quash complaints that the cameras are a means for the city to make money.
Nonetheless, some Murrieta residents are attempting to get a referendum urging a ban on red light cameras put before voters.