Why do towns install speeding cams? Is it because robotic, inflexible, perfect enforcement of every single infraction of the speed-limit makes the streets safer? Or because they can raise $250,000 a month in fines for small town budgets?
In Chevy Chase, for example, where speeding tickets brought in about $8,000 monthly before cop cams, "We are routinely bringing in approximately a quarter-million dollars per month," Geoffrey Biddle, Chevy Chase's village manager, told his Board of Managers in February.
For a community of 2,000 with an annual budget of $4.6 million, that's a bonanza. What's more, because locals know enough to evade the cop cams, the village's new revenue mostly comes from outsiders, rather like a commuter tax.
Nor are Chevy Chase's big gains unique. Washington's dozen cop cams have taken in more than $200 million since 2001. Scottsdale's six freeway cameras took in $17 million in 2006.
Help wanted: Operations Manager (personable, resourceful, and demonstrates outstanding attention to detail); Civil Liberties Legislative Counsel (advocacy, public speaking, blogging and other social media, media appearances and legislative and regulatory matters related to a variety of high technology public interest legal issues); 2017-19 Frank Stanton Fellowship (recent law school graduates or law students who will […]
China’s nightmarish “citizen scores” system uses your online activity, purchases, messages, and social graph to rate your creditworthiness and entitlement to services. One way your score can be plunged into negative territory is for a judge to declare you to be a bad person (mostly this happens to people said to have refused to pay […]
The current pre-clearance rules for Canadians being processed through US immigration at Canadian airports limit the powers of US immigration officials, preventing them from strip-searching Canadians (they can ask Canadian border guards to do it, but if the Canadian guards refuse, they’re out of luck) and giving Canadians the ability to turn around and leave […]
When you can’t wait for the world’s longest meeting to end, the mindless leg bouncing makes your boredom obvious and just annoys everybody else. Everyone knows the TPS reports need the damn cover sheet, but some sadistic colleague keeps forgetting, probably on purpose just to eat into your lunch hour. Enough is enough!While serving a […]
What could be more fun than a slingshot that shoots tiny airplanes? A slingshot that shoots tiny glowing airplanes of course! These toy planes are outfitted with ultra-bright LEDs, so you can fly all night without losing them in the trees.Whether you are a regular-sized child, or an overgrown adult one, these light-up flyers offer […]
You know the drill. You go to the dentist and they ask you how often you floss. You lie through your teeth and say, “every day!” (Bonus points if you have some cilantro or chives stuck in your gums from lunch). You don’t want to keep up the charade any longer, but rubbing that tiny strand […]