Roundup: February 26, 2014

Each Wednesday, we’ll publish quick summaries of the articles from the last week on We’re doing this because these articles are often strongly connected to the issues that National Motorists Association members are interested in.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014
Missouri Supreme Court Rejects Red-Light Camera Companies
Red-light camera companies could be in trouble in Missouri. The state Supreme Court on Tuesday declined to accept any of the desperate appeals filed by local municipalities and photo enforcement vendor American Traffic Solutions (ATS). As a result, three Court of Appeals cases that went against the use of red-light cameras become final and are the law of the land.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014
Virginia Moves To Limit Red-Light Camera Cash
Lawmakers in Virginia are moving quickly to remove the profit motive from the use of photo enforcement. On Monday, the state Senate Courts of Justice Committee voted 14-1 in favor of legislation that slashes the price of a red-light camera ticket from $50 to $20. The measure cleared the House of Delegates unanimously earlier this month.

Monday, February 24, 2014
Tennessee Supreme Court Says Cops Can Ignore Sobriety Test
The Tennessee Supreme Court decided on Thursday that the only use for roadside sobriety tests is to collect evidence against motorists, using them to convict individuals for driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI). The high court justices overturned an appellate decision from 2012 that found a driver who passed six of the tests with flying colors should never have been arrested. David D. Bell was arrested on May 13, 2009, even though the trial judge found no evidence of impairment in the sobriety tests when he reviewed the dashcam footage.

Sunday, February 23, 2014
France, Switzerland: Speed Cameras Sprayed, Scorched
A vigilante destroyed a speed camera in Lugano, Switzerland at around 4:30pm on Friday. According to La Provincia di Como, the device on the via dei Circoli in Cadro had been set on fire.

Friday, February 21, 2014
North Carolina Appeals Court Upholds Traffic Stop Without An Offense
For the first time, police in North Carolina are allowed to turn on their lights and siren to pull over any motorist, even when they have done nothing wrong. In a ruling last month, the North Carolina Court of Appeals for the first time in the state created a “community caretaking” exception to the Fourth Amendment. It was used to convict Audra Lindsey Smathers.

Thursday, February 20, 2014
Australian Tolling Firm Defends US Toll Road Failure
An Australian toll road company is getting defensive about its investment in an underperforming toll road in Virginia. Located just outside Washington, DC, the state and federal authorities poured hundreds of millions in taxpayer funds on what was supposed to be a showcase for public-private partnership innovation. Transurban charges up to $10 for a short 13-mile trip in high occupancy toll (HOT) lanes on the Capital Beltway, a proposition that far fewer motorists than expected have found worthwhile. Though the firm collects an average of $64,000 per day from drivers, this amount is well below projections. Transurban CEO Scott Charlton defended the plan with investors in a conference call last week.

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