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Senate Bill 207

Senate Bill 207

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Senate Bill 207
Senate Bill 207

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Published by: wmarabc2news on Mar 26, 2013
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11/16/2013

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SB 207Department of Legislative Services
Maryland General Assembly2013 Session
FISCAL AND POLICY NOTE
Senate Bill 207 (Senator Brochin,
et al.
)Judicial Proceedings
Vehicle Laws - Speed Monitoring and Work Zone Speed Control Systems
This bill alters the definition of a “recorded image” as it applies to speed monitoring and
work zone speed control systems to require the inclusion of sufficient information toallow for the calculation of the speed of a motor vehicle based on the two currentlyrequired time-stamped images. A local government must apply markings on the portionof the roadway on which violations are recorded by a speed monitoring system to aid inthe calculation. The bill also restricts the implementation of speed monitoring systems inschool zones to use near elementary and secondary schools; the separate authority to
 place speed monitoring systems near higher education institutions in Prince George’s
County is unaffected. A speed monitoring system in a school zone must be placed within500 feet of the school property. Finally, the bill alters the prohibition on the payment tocontractors of a fee contingent on the number of citations issued or paid by specifyingthat the prohibition applies to contractors that administer and process civil citations.
Fiscal Summary
State Effect:
Transportation Trust Fund (TTF) expenditures increase significantly inFY 2014 for the State Highway Administration (SHA) to procure new work zone speedmonitoring system technology that is able to produce recorded images that comply withthe bill. District Court workloads may increase to the extent that the additionalinformation provided on speed monitoring or work zone speed control system citationsresults in additional trials. TTF and special fund revenues may decrease significantly tothe extent that the operation of work zone speed control systems is interrupted during thetransition to new technology that complies with the bill.
Local Effect:
Local government expenditures may increase significantly for any jurisdiction that is required to alter the location of nonmobile speed monitoring systemswithin school zones, procure different technology, renegotiate contracts with vendors for 
 
SB 207/ Page 2
the administration and processing of civil citations, and/or hire additional lawenforcement personnel. Revenues may decrease significantly to the extent that theoperation of speed monitoring systems is interrupted during the transition to systems and processes that comply with the bill.
This bill imposes a mandate on a unit of localgovernment.
 
Small Business Effect:
Minimal.
 
Analysis
Current Law:
A recorded image is defined as an image recorded by a speed monitoringor work zone speed control system on a photograph, microphotograph, electronic image,videotape, or any other medium that shows the rear of a motor vehicle, at leasttwo time-stamped images of the motor vehicle that include the same stationary objectnear the motor vehicle, and, on at least one image or portion of tape, a clear and legibleidentification of the entire registration plate number of the motor vehicle.SHA or a local authority may designate an area within a half-mile radius of a school as aschool zone, which must have signs designating the school zone and may have other traffic control devices, including timed flashing warning lights. A local authority isdefined as a political subdivision or a local board or other body that has authority under State law to enact laws and adopt local police regulations relating to traffic
. A “school”
is not defined by State law, but according to the SHA website, it is an accredited public, parochial, or private learning institution for one or more grades kindergarten through thetwelfth grade.A speed monitoring system operator may be a representative of a local law enforcementagency (or if the local government does not have a police force, then another designatedunit) or a contractor. A work zone speed control system operator is a police officer,representative of a State or local police department, or an SHA contractor who has beentrained and certified to operate a work zone speed control system.A contractor that
 provides, deploys, or operates
a work zone speed control system, or acontractor that
operates
a local speed monitoring system, may not be paid a fee that iscontingent on the number of citations issued or paid.
Background:
 
Speed Monitoring Systems
Chapter 15 of 2006 (HB 443 of 2005) authorized the first use of speed monitoringsystems in the State, but it only applied to highways in school zones and residential
 
SB 207/ Page 3
districts in Montgomery County. Chapter 500 of 2009 (SB 277) expanded statewide theauthorization for the use of speed monitoring systems in school zones. Chapter 474 of 
2010 (HB 1477) authorized the use of speed monitoring systems in Prince George’s
County on a highway located within the grounds of an institution of higher education or on nearby highways under certain circumstances.Unless the driver of a motor vehicle received a citation from a police officer at the timeof the violation, the owner or driver of the vehicle is subject to a civil penalty if thevehicle is recorded speeding at least 12 miles per hour above the posted speed limit by aspeed monitoring system in violation of specified speed restrictions in the MarylandVehicle Law. The maximum fine for a citation issued by a speed monitoring systemoperator is $40. However, a local law enforcement or other designated agency operatingthe speed monitoring system may mail a warning notice instead of a citation.Before activating an unmanned stationary speed monitoring system, a local jurisdictionmust:
 
 publish notice of the location on its website and in a newspaper of generalcirculation in the jurisdiction;
 
ensure that each school zone sign indicates that speed monitoring systems are inuse in school zones; and
 
for a speed monitoring system near an institution of higher education, ensure thatall speed limit signs approaching and within the segment of highway on which thespeed monitoring system is located include signs that indicate that a speedmonitoring system is in use and that are in accordance with the manual andspecifications for a uniform system of traffic control devices adopted by SHA.A speed monitoring system may be placed in a school zone for operation between6:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Before a speed monitoring system may be used in a local jurisdiction, its use must be authorized by the governing body byordinance or resolution adopted after reasonable notice and a public hearing.As shown in
Exhibit 1
, a number of counties and municipal corporations currentlyimplement speed monitoring systems. The Department of Legislative Services advisesthat, as to municipal corporations, the exhibit only reflects municipal corporations thathave reported revenues to the Comptroller in fiscal 2012 and, therefore, may not includeall municipal corporations that
currently implement 
speed monitoring systems. Further,additional jurisdictions may be
considering 
the use of speed monitoring systems at thistime.From the fines generated by a speed monitoring system, the relevant jurisdiction mayrecover the costs of implementing the system and may spend any remaining balance

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