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Iowa Supreme Court Rules DOT Doesn’t Have Authority to Regulate Traffic Cameras

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DES MOINES, Iowa – The Iowa Supreme Court has reversed a district court’s decision and ruled the Iowa Department of Transportation does not have the authority to enact rules that regulate traffic cameras located along primary roads.

The ruling, issued Friday, says the Iowa Legislature would have to take action to allow the DOT that power.

The cities of Des Moines, Muscatine, and Cedar Rapids sued the Iowa Department of Transportation over the cameras. The lawsuit stemmed from the DOT ordering nine traffic cameras be shut off across the state in 2017.

The affected cities claimed the DOT does not have that power, but the department disagreed, saying it does — especially when working to keep highways safe.

The Iowa Supreme Court ruling states, “We conclude that the IDOT was without statutory authority to promulgate its administrative rules regarding the municipalities’ ATE systems. We reverse the district court’s order and remand for further proceedings consistent with this opinion.”

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