ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - Mayor Bill Foster's proposed 2014 budget includes a forecast drop in revenue from fines & forfeitures, which includes red light camera (RLC) citations.
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As the number of RLC citations was surging in St. Pete a year ago, the city predicted $3.7 million in revenue from traffic and parking fines, a jump of 50% from the previous year. But as drivers adjusted to the 22 cameras across the city, the city amended its 2013 forecast to just $2.6 million - less than 10% of the 2012 numbers.
Not all of that revenue comes from RLC, but with the length of yellow lights increasing across the state, St. Pete is now predicting even less revenue from traffic and parking fines next year.
The mayor's 2014 budget forecasts just $2.5 million from traffic & parking fines, a 5% drop from this year's estimated totals and a 32% drop from the original 2013 estimates.
According to the Tampa Tribune, the City of Tampa, which operates 41 red light cameras, is also predicting a revenue shortfall from fines and forfeitures. Budget estimates for 2013 were for $5.4 million in RLC revenue, but actual revenues were closer to $3.4 million.
City leaders from both Tampa and St. Pete have said the falling citation numbers are good signs that drivers are adjusting to safer driving styles and the technology is saving lives.
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