Monday, April 02, 2012

The Dollars and Sense of Speed Cams

It turns out that the Ellicott Mills Middle School speed trap is not one of the more profitable placements for the white speed cam vans. According to this report in Explore Howard, Ellicott Mills is in the bottom five school sites in issuing speeding tickets. The top five are “on Tamar Drive, near Jeffers Hill Elementary School; in Columbia and Ellicott City on Old Montgomery Road, near the Maryland School for the Deaf; in Ellicott City on Centennial Lane, near Centennial High, Burleigh Manor Middle and Centennial Elementary; and, on Rogers Avenue near Hollifield Station Elementary.”

Since last December, HoCo speed cams have generated almost $200K in revenue. Tell me again that this is not about the money

Well, not just yet anyway. Right now the only one making money on these speed cams is ACS, Inc., part of Xerox. According to this story by David Greisman in Explore Howard, “As of March 7, $182,360 in fines had been collected. Of that, $87,375 has been paid to ACS Inc., a Dallas-based vendor that provides the speed camera equipment and back office staff.”

ACS offers what it calls a “comprehensive solution” with “reliable, court tested and tamper-proof evidence of violation infractions.” They also claim “increased revenue collections.”

It sounds like a good business…for ACS anyway, not so much for HoCo so far.

“The speed camera program has cost the county $196,073 through the first week of March, including initial start-up expenses, salaries, equipment, furniture, office supplies and uniforms, according to police department spokeswoman Sherry Llewellyn.”


I thought these were unmanned vans. 
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