Greenville City Council votes to end red light camera program

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WITN) – The Greenville City Council voted to discontinue its red light camera program Monday.

Despite the program’s discontinuation, Greenville Mayor PJ Connelly says he wants residents to understand that it hasn’t ended just yet.

“People are still going to get tickets between now and November 15th,” Connelly said. “They’ve got 30 days to be able to pay or to appeal the ticket that they receive so it’s going to take some time for them to be able to bring those payments to the city. Also, it’s going to take some time for us to be able to get the camera equipment out of the city.”

The vote to discontinue the program was 5-1 with Councilman Rick Smiley the one vote opposed.

Smiley expressed during the meeting, that he felt the program was beneficial for people in Greenville and Connelly said he respected his views.

“I think Councilmember Smiley brings up some really good points. It’s a very data driven approach that he’s looking at.

“No citations will be issued after the November 15, 2022 end date, and the cameras will be deactivated at that time,” the city council said.

The cameras had been in operation since 2017 at five intersections in the city. The city council says since their installation, total vehicle crashes at the intersections with red light cameras decreased by 29%.

Earlier this year, the state Court of Appeals ruled that not enough money from the program was going to the county school system.

State law says 90% of all fines must go to the school system, while Pitt County Schools got only 72% during a two-year period.

The city appealed the ruling to the state Supreme Court, but the high court has never indicated whether it will agree to hear the case or not.

In June, Greenville amended its contract with the private company operating the cameras. That amendment said the program would end on November 15th if the high court didn’t rule in the city’s favor.

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