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10 News Investigators: Lakeland red light cameras debated during mayoral forum

12:12 PM, Sep 4, 2013   |    comments
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LAKELAND, Florida -- Issues brought to light during 10 News' extensive investigations of red light cameras in Florida made their way into Wednesday morning's Lakeland mayoral debate.

The city flipped the switch on nine new cameras last weekend, making the issue an important one to many voters.

TIMELINE: 10 News' short yellows investigation
MAP: Red light cameras & short yellows in your neighborhood

Mayor Gow Fields, seeking re-election, said the red light cameras (RLC) have been "very effective" in Lakeland. He cited a reduction in citations since the program's inception, as well as the finances and resources to put more officers on the street.

"(Citizens) have asked us to do more with less," Fields said. "The cameras are a form of technology."

Fields' prime opponent, City Commissioner Howard Wiggs, said he supported the cameras but was open to "exploring alternatives," such as longer yellow lights.

Wiggs also said he objected to "rolling right" citations since right turns account for a tiny fraction of overall accidents.

Find 10 News Investigator Noah Pransky on Facebook or follow his updates on Twitter. Send your story tips to noah@wtsp.com.

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