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City Shelves Speed Camera Rollout Until Next Year As Bids Roll In

By Chuck Sudo in News on Sep 11, 2012 5:40PM

Image Credit: -Tripp-
Chicago was supposed to be awash in speeding cameras come November. Instead, a legal snag has the city postponing the start of installing new speeding cameras until next year.

The Tribune has the details.

The problem: a 38-year-old opinion by the Illinois attorney general that says children must be "visibly present" before school zone speed limits can be enforced. What that means is those robotic safety-zone cameras must not only capture high-definition images of speeding cars and their license plates, they also must seek out and photograph a child as much as a football field's distance away — preferably in the same shot.

That opinion was apparently a main question for vendors submitting Requests for Proposal for installing the speeding cameras to the city. Monday was the final deadline for companies to submit their bids to the city. An Aug. 9 deadline was extended several times because there were so many questions regarding the process; Chicago Department of Transportation spokesman Peter Scales told The Expired Meter his department fielded over 200 queries.

In the end, nine companies submitted bids for the speeding camera contract. The most notable of them was Redflex Traffic Systems, which already handles installing red light cameras for the city. Redflex is represented by lobbying firm Resolute Consulting, LLC. Resolute’s Greg Goldner is an Emanuel supporter, former aide to Richard M. Daley and formed the political action campaign For a Better Chicago. Emanuel ordered the speeding camera contract placed out for bid after the Tribune revealed Goldner’s connections to Redflex.