The Tea Party backed members of the Lafayette City-Parish Council are co-sponsoring an ordinance that effectively ends electronic enforcement of traffic laws by letting consolidated government’s contract with RedFlex expire later this spring. The ordinance, which will be introduced at Tuesday’s meeting and is co-sponsored by Councilmen Jared Bellard, Andy Naquin and William Theriot, needs five votes to advance to final adoption, which would take place on April 3.
LCG’s contract with RedFlex expires June 4. The controversial program using cameras at signalled intersections as well as “speed vans” has been controversial since it went into effect in 2007. Operated under the supervision of LCG’s Traffic and Transporation Department, many residents in Lafayette see SafeSpeed/SafeLight as simply a revenue generator for local government, although Traffic Director Tony Tramel has long argued — and has the empirical evidence to prove it in the form of crash data at intersections where the cameras have been installed — that the program’s purpose is to change driver behavior and make Lafayette streets safer.
It’s unclear at this time whether the ordinance will be voted on “in globo,” or within a batch of introductory ordinances, or if it will be pulled from the batch and voted on separately. Oftentimes controversial introductory ordinances are pulled from globo so council members can discuss them and hear public input.
Read the ordinance here.
Also on the agenda among introductory ordinances is a measure offered by Councilman Brandon Shelvin that would suspend the special law enforcement levy paid by downtown bars while a federal lawsuit filed against LCG over the levy works its way through the court system.