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City Dumping Red Light Camera Contractor

By Chuck Sudo in News on Feb 9, 2013 7:00PM

Photo Credit: -Tripp-
Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced Friday the city would not renew Redflex traffic System's contract to maintain Chicago's network of red light cameras after the current contract expires in July.

Emanuel's announcement comes after a Chicago Tribune report that Maxwell Findlay, chairman of parent company Redflex Holdings Ltd., resigned from his post earlier this week amid investigations by the city Inspector General's office and Redflex regarding the company's relationship with former Transportation Department official John Bills.

Redflex also announced that the company was cooperating with law enforcement authorities in their investigation. News of Findlay's announcement led to Redflex stock being suspended from trading on the Australian Securities Exchange.

The City IGO's investigation into the relationship between Redflex Traffic Systems and Bills began after an October Tribune report on a 2010 hotel tab Redflex paid for Bills that wasn't reported to the City Board of Ethics until weeks before the Tribune's story was published.

Emanuel's announcement marks a precipitous fall from grace for Redflex, which was considered a favorite for the city's upcoming traffic camera contract which could blanket up to half the city in surveillance cameras. The traffic camera program will erect video surveillance in school zones and in parks. Emanuel and other advocates of the program have hailed it as a safety measure, but the tickets motorists would be issued for speeding could be a potential financial boon to the city and the company that holds the contract.