The city of Clermont is abandoning plans to expand the controversial red light camera program.
Red light cameras were only around in Clermont for a month, before thousands of unsuspected drivers received tickets. Most of which didn’t think they’d done anything wrong.
“When you get this ticket in the mail you’ve had no chance to state your case,” Melanie Duvall commented about the tickets Monday.
So they went to Clermont City leaders February 11, who ordered a review of nearly 3,000 tickets that month. Some 2,373 tickets were dismissed, almost all of them at the same intersection at Hancock Road and SR 50. Many were for right turns on red without coming to a complete stop.
The numbers from the six cameras at four intersections on State Road 50 were startling to Clermont Council members who had already signed a contract with a company to install 24 cameras throughout the city at 13 intersections. Most of those cameras were to be along U.S. 27.
Council directed Clermont’s City Manager to find out if it was too late to change the contract with the red light camera company ATS. Those changes included everything from changing the ticketing guidelines to being let out of the added cameras.
In a letter obtained by News 13, ATS says it will now allow the city to back out of its plan for more cameras with no penalty.
But the six original cameras remain, along with the two-and-a-half years left on the original contract.
Some people aren’t happy about Clermont quickly putting the brakes on things.
"I think we need the cameras and the people who complained were the ones who were running the red lights,” Roberta McCaffery said.
“Anything that makes it safer for all us drivers I’m all for it, if you don’t run them you don’t have to worry about it,” Ron Skeen said.
Clermont Spokesperson Doris Bloodsworth said the arrangement will give the city time to study the cameras' effectiveness moving forward.