Traffic cameras are being challenged once again in the Iowa Legislature. The Senate Judiciary committee passed the bill 9-5 with Republican Senators Dan Dawson and Zach Nunn joining Democrats Tony Bisignano, Rob Hogg and Janet Petersen in opposition.

Discussion was limited due to a full agenda for the committee, but freshman Republican Sen. Zach Whiting did speak a little bit.

“I’m willing to vote for this,” Whiting said. “This does feel to be more of an urban issue than rural issue. I would like to learn more about the issue. This bill is pretty clear, it’s a ban. But if we can find ways to address due process concerns and build in reforms possibly having a process for a local vote or referendum to either put in or take out cameras…this will be one of my catchphrases I hope catches on as we consider bills on the floor — if you don’t break the law, you won’t get in trouble.”

Senator Jake Chapman agreed with Bisignano, who said he hoped the issue would be settled once and for all. He said that’d be a lot easier to do if Bisignano would get on board and support the bill. Due process, Chapman said, is the issue.

“We can all agree it’s a moving violating,” Chapman said. “Yet it’s not a moving violation and it’s not a moving violation because there’s no due process. Rather it’s just a civil fine and it’s not put on your record. This bill will protect Iowans’ due process rights.”

Jacob Hall

Author: Jacob Hall