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Senate Votes to Restrict But Not Ban Traffic Cameras in Iowa

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DES MOINES, Iowa  —  State Senator Brad Zaun’s traffic camera bill passed the State Senate last night but with little of Zaun’s original intent still intact.

On Wednesday night the Senate stripped away language that would have banned automated traffic cameras in Iowa and replaced it with new language limiting where the cameras can be used.  The measure passed with bipartisan support, 31-18, in the Republican controlled Senate.

Under the measure a local government must complete a report detailing why the camera is needed.  That report must detail accident data in the intersection, potential risks to peace officers using traditional speed enforcement techniques and other solutions the local government has tried unsuccessfully to control the intersection.

The measure also requires that signs warning of the traffic camera be posted clearly in advance of the camera.  That applies to both fixed and mobile cameras.

Many of these rules are already enforced by the Department of Transportation but this measure would make them stricter and uniform statewide.

The bill now goes to the Iowa House.