Montana Bans Red-Light Cameras

By Beacon Staff

HELENA – Montana has banned the use of red-light cameras to catch drivers breaking traffic laws, despite existing contracts the cities of Billings and Bozeman signed with camera suppliers.

Gov. Brian Schweitzer on Tuesday signed into law House Bill 531. It forbids using cameras or any other technology to enforce violations not witnessed by a police officer.

Bozeman signed with Arizona-based Redflex Traffic Systems in 2008 to install red-light cameras at seven of its intersections. Billings also recently approved a contract with the same company for up to 30 city intersections.

The state Senate had amended the measure to allow existing contracts for the cameras, but the House rejected the change.

Red-light cameras are in use in many as 25 other states.