for Immediate Release
February 12, 2001
Rep. Joseph M. Souki
Room 433, State Capitol
Honolulu, HI 96813
HOUSE COMMITTEE PROPOSES BALANCED TRAFFIC CAMERA PROGRAM
The House Transportation Committee tomorrow will propose repeal of the current laws governing traffic enforcement cameras and replace it with new measures to balance the need for improved highway safety while addressing public concerns, according to Rep. Joseph M. Souki, committee chair.
"The people I've talked to are very troubled by the current program, but they still want to curb excessive speeding and they want safer highways," Souki said. "That's why we're proposing this and giving it a public hearing."
Souki said there is no argument that the controversial program has resulted in a dramatic reduction in speeding, but the Legislature must acknowledge the program's shortcomings. He said House Bill 2167 seeks to achieve the following:
Souki said the committee will also hear a bill to raise speed limits on State roadways.
"I expect there will be a lot of discussion on these proposals. A lot of people just want to scrap traffic cameras -- period. Lawyers who are making money off the current system will probably have a lot to say. And I fully expect insurance companies to strongly object to any attempt that prevents them from making more money," Souki said.
"But I have to go back to 1998, when excessive speeding was a top priority and the community demanded that we do something about the extreme danger it presented on our highways. I think we have a moral obligation to respect that concern as well," he said.
The measures will be heard tomorrow in State Capitol Room 309 beginning at 9:00 a.m.