Sunday, April 29, 2012

Another Red-Light Camera Scam

An industrious town in New Mexico is upping the ante against traffic violators, threatening to shut off the utilities of those who don't pay their fines.

Las Cruces' unpopular decision came after they installed cameras at intersections and watched as $2 million dollars in fines just drove off into the distance.

'Over time we were looking at various options, various ways to recoup that money,' Udell Vigil, the communications director for the City of Las Cruces, told

* * *

The problem is that the city's hands are tied - they can't go through the courts to get their cash, Mr Vigil said.

'We can’t go through the courts; it’s not that type of citation,' Mr Vigil said. 'We don’t have legal enforcement authority.'

So they found a loophole.

Section 28-10 of the Las Cruces Municipal code says that the city can 'cease to furnish' utilities like water, gas and sewage to any person that owes a debt to the city, no matter how small the amount.

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