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Inspector General: Red-Light Camera Program Management 'Fundamentally Deficient' Under Redflex

By Chuck Sudo in News on Oct 10, 2014 3:40PM

Photo credit: Joseph R. Palmer
Chicago Inspector General Joseph Ferguson’s office released its review of the city’s red-light camera network under former manager Redflex Traffic Solutions Friday morning. To the surprise of few, the OIG found management of the program by Redflex and the city to be lacking, while the source of spikes in ticket issuances from a dozen cameras in the network that prompted the review remain a mystery.

Calling the Chicago Department of Transportation’s management of the red-light camera program with Redflex “fundamentally deficient,” the OIG write:

Specifically, CDOT failed to request and review reports and data from Redflex that would likely have revealed enforcement anomalies as they occurred, and failed to fully exercise and enforce the terms of the City’s contract with Redflex, which required Redflex to evaluate data and identify any anomalies in RLC system activity.

Regarding the spikes in tickets from cameras in the network, which resulted in the city calling for an audit of nearly 16,000 tickets, the report was more damning. (Emphasis ours.)

OIG found that CDOT’s conclusions for three of the intersections were sufficiently consistent with source documentation and available records. The absence of complete City and vendor historical program records and data make a conclusive determination for other historical anomalies very difficult, and in many instances likely impossible.

Ferguson’s office also faulted CDOT for focusing on keeping the network operational (and ostensibly continuing to issue tickets), instead of searching for the root causes of the spikes. Transportation Commissioner Rebekah Scheinfeld, in response to Ferguson, accepted culpability.

"These issues demonstrate that the past management of the program was insufficient. Although the program has shown dramatic improvements in safety, due to those technical and management deficiencies the program was actually under-enforcing violations."

We’ve included the OIG report below.

Chicago Office of the Inspector General Red-Light Camera Review