Goodbye, snitch tickets. The latest version of State Sen. Joe Simitian's red-light camera reform bill was signed into law by the governor on Sept. 28.
The bill, a revised version of one vetoed by Gov. Jerry Brown last year, establishes statewide standards for the installation and operation of red-light cameras, and makes it easier to challenge unjustified tickets.
The new law requires that camera locations be chosen solely on the basis of safety rather than revenue considerations; regulates operation and signage; and prohibits "snitch tickets," which some police departments such as Menlo Park's have used to try to coerce recipients into identifying drivers in photos when the camera's shot is unclear.
"I am extremely pleased that the Governor has signed this bill, which will help restore public confidence in the use and fairness of red-light cameras," Sen. Simitian, D-Palo Alto, said in a press release. "Red-light cameras can be an important public safety tool, but they shouldn't be abused. This bill will establish important ground rules, (and) ensure that if drivers get a ticket that they shouldn't have, they can contest the ticket easily. It will put driver safety, rather than the revenue, first."