Fayetteville red light camera program generates $1.7 million for schools

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. (WNCN) — Drivers who ran red lights at several Fayetteville intersections generated $1.7 million for Cumberland County Schools in the past two years, and the city will soon start issuing fines at five more locations.

The city installed 10 red light traffic cameras in July 2015. Traffic engineer Lee Jernigan said the cameras caught about 36,000 violations in the first two years of the program.

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The fine is $100 but there is no penalty to a driver’s license record.

About two-thirds of people who received tickets paid their fines in full, with $65 from each ticket going to Cumberland County Schools. The remaining $35 going to American Traffic Solutions, which operates the cameras.

“The city doesn’t have any cost associated with the program. We don’t retain any revenue from the program. The goal is to raise awareness on the seriousness of red light running in our community, and try and improve the safety in our community,” Jernigan said.

“Most of the time folks are speeding if they run red lights and if an accident’s created, it’s a t-bone type accident which can result in a very severe injury.”

Jernigan said the number of wrecks in the intersections which have cameras is about the same as in the year before the monitoring devices went up. The amount of tickets issued is also consistent, with nearly 1,500 each month, an average of almost 50 per day.

However, Jernigan said the progress of the program is evident when looking at repeat offenders. He said only 4 percent of the more than 22,000 people who paid tickets have gotten another citation.

“One thing of measuring success is our rate at which people do not get a second ticket, so we’re looking at that as a successful piece,” he said.

Renarta Clanton Moyd, the chief communications officer for Cumberland County Schools, said the schools received about $800,000 each of the past two years as a result of the Red Light Camera Program.

“Which helps us tremendously. We’re able to use those monies to help with our heating and air conditioning systems, different things as far as construction,” Moyd said.

“It’s made a difference in our classrooms. We’re more than appreciative, and it’s really helped us with doing what we need to do each day as educators, which is helping our young people be the best selves that they can be.”

The new camera locations are at the intersections of:

Grove Street and Ramsey Street
Grove Street and B Street
Skibo Road and Red Tip Road
Owen Drive and Village Drive
Raeford Road and Hope Mills Road

Violators from August 1 through August 7 will receive written warnings. The city will issue $100 fines starting August 8.

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