Senate OKs ban of ‘robocop’ camera ticketing

DENVER — The Colorado House passed a flurry of measures over the past couple of days before taking off Good Friday today, including bills to reform how recall elections are performed and a bill to ban the use of cameras to give tickets to motorists who run red lights.

The House started Thursday when it approved a controversial measure to alter the way the state deals with recall elections.

The measure, SB158, redefines what Election Day means, changing it from a single day to the entire time ballots can be cast, which can be several weeks.

Republicans argued that the measure attempts to alter the Colorado Constitution, but Democrats said the Legislature has the right to define undefined terms to clarify what the Constitution means.

Both expect the measure, which passed on a party-line 37-28 vote, to be decided in the courts. It heads to the Senate for a final vote.

Later in the day, the Senate gave preliminary approval to a bill to ban communities from using cameras to nab motorists who run red lights.

Proponents argued that the use is being abused by some cities as a way to generate revenue, but opponents said they do have a law-enforcement value.

Sen. Steve King, R-Grand Junction, said he hoped the bill would be amended to allow their use, but in conjunction with law enforcement personnel actually handing out tickets, rather than a “robocop” camera doing so by mail weeks later.

He didn’t get what he wanted.

In other action, the House approved two measures Wednesday introduced by Rep. Ray Scott, R-Grand Junction.

One, HB1326, would offer a tax credit to businesses that invest in commercial trucks and heavy equipment that use clean-burning diesel, natural gas or propane.

“Clean-burning fuel, natural gas and propane are effective, efficient and incredibly clean fossil fuels that are growing in use across the country,” Scott said. “It’s great to see the House pass this bipartisan effort, which will encourage Coloradans to invest in this new technology.”

The other measure, HB1202, calls for a study on the impact state mandates have on school districts, one that Scott said he hopes will lead to fewer requirements placed on what the representative calls already overburdened schools.

Both measures head to the Senate for more debate.


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Are politicians really losing it?  The metro area averages a hit and run a week, most resulting in death, yet politicians vote to ban cameras to help bring lawbreakers to justice.  Not to mention giving tickets to those who run red lights putting others at risk and speeding.


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