New South Dakota rules on ticket cameras take effect July 1

By Keith Goble, Land Line state legislative editor | 6/24/2014

Two new laws in effect the first of the month in South Dakota are intended to make sure residents are not bothered with electronic ticketing.

In an effort to discourage the use of automated cameras to ticket drivers, the first new rule prohibits communities from partnering with photo ticketing companies to access necessary information to send red-light camera tickets for alleged violations.

South Dakota has not had photo ticketing since 2010 after a circuit court judge ruled red-light cameras used in Sioux Falls were illegal.

Another new law covers ticket programs in other states. Effective July 1, information about South Dakota drivers is prohibited from being shared for the collection of civil fines that result from camera tickets.

Specifically, the South Dakota Department of Transportation is forbidden from releasing vehicle information for the purpose of issuing automated enforcement citations.

The rule change addresses concerns about a ticket program in Sioux City, Iowa. The border city uses 11 red-light cameras on various roadways and two speed cameras along Interstate 29.

Tickets sent in the mail to vehicle owners run between $100 and $200. Sen. Don Lederman, R-Dakota Dunes, said that during a one-year period the cameras generated about $5 million in revenue for the city.

“First-class mail does not meet due process requirements. At least it doesn’t here in South Dakota,” Lederman said in earlier remarks at the statehouse.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association supports efforts to limit ticket cameras. OOIDA officials say the focus on the revenue-generating devices ignores the more logical and reasoned approach to roads and traffic.

OOIDA Executive Vice President Todd Spencer has said the goal should be to keep traffic moving in as safe a manner as possible. He has also said that communities would be better served to pursue “intelligent traffic lights that actually monitor traffic and are triggered by traffic flow.”

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