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          Front Page




Red-Light Cameras To Operate Again

By Dan McKay/
Journal Staff Writer
      Albuquerque's red-light cameras should be operating again by noon Thursday, the mayor said today.
    In a 9:30 a.m. news conference, Mayor Martín Chávez said he is reinstating the program. He shut it down last week after the Legislature passed a bill to take some of the money generated by the cameras.
    Chávez said this morning that the city has about $7 million set aside to pay for the program. That money was the profit generated by the program in its last few years of operation.
    It should allow the city to keep the cameras on for three or four more years.
    But after that? Chávez said he didn't know. He pointed out there may be a new governor — perhaps even a new mayor — by then. He hinted that he hopes the state will reconsider its decision to take so much of the camera revenue.
    Chávez said he shut down the cameras last week because the city needed to study the effects of the Legislature's action and what would happen if the cameras weren't sending people tickets. To study that question, the cameras continued recording violations after the shutdown, even though no citations were mailed.
    Red-light and speeding violations doubled after the cameras were turned off, Chávez said.