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Speed Cameras

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OPINION
May 19, 2013
In theory, Americans have the fundamental right to confront their accuser. But what if the accuser is an inanimate camera lens? It is difficult to cross-examine a photograph. As a community, we have generally decided that speed cameras have value, particularly in school zones where all else has failed. The wellbeing of our children tops all. And if speed cameras slow down the flow of traffic and make them safer, they have our support. Of course there are a whole lot of issues involving speed cameras that transcend safety, the most obvious being revenue.
NEWS
By C.J. LOVELACE | cj.lovelace@herald-mail.com | January 18, 2012
Hagerstown Police Chief Arthur Smith this week suggested 15 school zones where cameras could be installed to catch speeding motorists. Smith outlined the locations at a Tuesday night work session of the Hagerstown City Council, which last month voted to introduce an ordinance that would provide for the use of speed cameras. The selected spots are those where police officers have observed or have received reports of speeding, Smith told the council. The goal is to improve safety for children as they travel to and from school for classes or school-related functions, he said.
NEWS
By C.J. LOVELACE | cj.lovelace@herald-mail.com | July 2, 2012
It's been about two months since automated speed cameras went live in school zones around the city of Hagerstown, and preliminary figures show that speeding in those areas has begun to decrease, according to city officials. “The early results are better than expected,” Hagerstown Police Capt. Mark Holtzman said Friday. Compared with traffic data collected by the city's engineering department before cameras were installed, police expected to see about an 80 percent drop in speeding violations, but results have been better in some locations, he said.
NEWS
By CALEB CALHOUN | caleb.calhoun@herald-mail.com | March 13, 2012
Hagerstown's first speed cameras were installed Tuesday morning along Northern Avenue at Crofton Road in the area of Fountaindale Elementary School. Members of the Hagerstown Police Department and Brekford - the company contracted to provide the cameras as part of the Hagerstown Automated Speed Enforcement Program - attended the camera kickoff. “Public safety is very important to us,” Hagerstown police Capt. Mark Holtzman said. “It's been a longtime initiative of the police department to try and reduce the speed around the schools.” A 30-day warning period began on Tuesday for motorists, Holtzman said.
NEWS
By DON AINES | dona@herald-mail.com | August 23, 2013
With school back in session in Washington County, Hagerstown Police Chief Mark Holtzman said his department is taking extra steps to ensure the accuracy of speed cameras and improve the public's confidence in the system. “It's not about catching people speeding; it's about reducing speed,” Holtzman said Friday. One step the department is taking is to calibrate the 11 camera systems twice a year - twice what is required by Maryland law - to ensure they are operating properly, he said.
NEWS
April 12, 2012
Speed cameras that were installed last month on Northern Avenue between Fountaindale Elementary and Northern Middle schools in Hagerstown will go live Monday. The cameras were installed and activated March 13 to give motorists a 30-day warning period, according to a city news release. Beginning at 6 a.m. Monday, vehicles traveling 12 mph or more above the speed limit will be issued a $40 citation. That amount will be reduced to $35 if the fine is paid within 10 days of the ticket being mailed.
NEWS
By C.J. LOVELACE | cj.lovelace@herald-mail.com | January 24, 2012
The Hagerstown City Council Tuesday evening unanimously approved the introduction of ordinances that would designate school speed-camera zones and approve a loan to buy larger recycling bins for city residents. The five-member council approved the introduction of an ordinance that establishes citywide school zones, which was first presented by Police Chief Arthur Smith last Tuesday. The school zone ordinance would establish speed limits at more than a dozen locations near Hagerstown schools that could be sites for new speed-monitoring cameras.
NEWS
By ERIN CUNNINGHAM | April 10, 2009
ANNAPOLIS -- State lawmakers have lost in their attempt to exclude Washington County from a bill allowing speed cameras in school and work zones. The House of Delegates voted 94-41 on Friday to approve the Senate's version of the bill to crack down on speeders by imposing $40 fines. The House defeated by a vote of 86-43 an amendment offered by Del. Christopher B. Shank to exclude Washington, Allegany and Garrett counties from the legislation. Shank, R-Washington, and Del. Richard B. Weldon Jr., who is unaffiliated and represents parts of Washington and Frederick counties, voted for the amendment.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
By DON AINES | dona@herald-mail.com | August 23, 2013
With school back in session in Washington County, Hagerstown Police Chief Mark Holtzman said his department is taking extra steps to ensure the accuracy of speed cameras and improve the public's confidence in the system. “It's not about catching people speeding; it's about reducing speed,” Holtzman said Friday. One step the department is taking is to calibrate the 11 camera systems twice a year - twice what is required by Maryland law - to ensure they are operating properly, he said.
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OPINION
By ART CALLAHAM | August 18, 2013
I was sure the “speed camera” issue was going to get the usual number of “pooh hoohs” from the usual suspects who are against anything and everything. A good friend of mine told me that “if you have six loud people against anything here in Washington County, you have a majority.” It took me a moment to process that truism; but, I only had to remember the new medical facility issue, some truck stop proposals, and almost anything dealing with land use to see the truth in my friend's statement.
OPINION
August 5, 2013
What would immigrant ancestors advise you to do? To the editor: Do you know your immigrant forebears? My grandmother came from Latvia pursuing the classic American dream; real opportunity. My grandfather, at the age of 16, fled forced conscription into the Russian army. Both arrived around the turn of the 20th century. My in-laws escaped the Nazis in 1939. They told me of a welcoming America and quick, easily attainable citizenship. The undocumented alien immigrants of today come to escape difficult circumstances, too, but find no path to American citizenship.
OPINION
July 15, 2013
As an aging male who believes he can still perform a lot of the same activities he could 20 years ago, I'm somewhat sympathetic to what appears to be a growing elder-stud movement. True, I'm a little grossed out by the new testosterone craze that's being advertised on television, whereby men in their 70s and 80s - after a lengthy and highly expensive hormonal regimen - are able to Photoshop their own heads onto bodies of 32-year-old males. Even more amazing, the wives of the men who ingest this product suddenly get 30 years younger, as the ripped elder statesman and his spouse-babe wink knowingly at each other in the commercial about his “newfound vitality.” But even if this is true, I'm not sure that the nation needs a new race of Super Geezers, elbowing their way into line at the early bird special and hurling their teeth through department store windows during bouts of post-hurricane looting.
OPINION
June 16, 2013
“To all you people out there who complain about getting tickets from speed cameras, which allow you 12 miles an hour over the speed limit before you're fined: Try to stop complaining, and slow down.” - Hancock “I just read in The Herald of June 7, the article by Allan Powell, on Rand Paul. I wasn't interested in Mr. Paul and his run for presidency until I read that article, and now I'm sure to (support) him.” - Washington County “Councilwoman Nigh. ... She has fought every progressive ... fought within the city, and continues to make it go downhill.
OPINION
May 29, 2013
“This thank you goes out to the gentleman that was behind my fianceé ... last Wednesday night around 10:30 p.m. She put the groceries on the conveyor and after ringing the items up she was short $45. Starting to put back items, this good-hearted gentleman behind her with his daughter told her to 'just put those items back up there, I'll pay for them.' She didn't get his name, but the both of us want to thank him very much for paying the difference....
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