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House members eye red-light cameras

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A proposal that would eliminate red-light cameras is scheduled to go before the House Transportation & Infrastructure Subcommittee on Wednesday.

The discussion of the measure (HB 6007), sponsored by Rep. Bryan Avila, R-Hialeah, and Rep. Blaise Ingoglia, R-Spring Hill, is the first step in a renewed effort by some lawmakers during the upcoming legislative session to turn off the traffic cameras.

Attempts to ban red-light cameras have failed during past sessions.

Supporters of the cameras say they improve traffic safety, while critics say the devices have become a way for local governments to collect revenue.

The state and local governments split the $158 fines for red-light camera violations.

Fines yielded nearly $60 million for the state budget last year, according to the state Department of Revenue.

Cities and counties collected about $53 million, with about half of that going to red-light camera companies.

Sen. Frank Artiles, R-Miami, has filed a Senate version of the bill (SB 178) aimed at ending the cameras.