Counties Support Stop Sign Monitoring Systems, Propose That Fines Be Reinvested in Public Safety

On February 16, 2023, Associate Policy Director Sarah Sample testified before the House Environment and Transportation Committee in support of HB 0367 – Vehicle Laws – Stop Sign Monitoring Systems – Authorization with amendments.

HB 0367 authorizes counties to install stop sign monitoring systems on local roadways, provided such an action is in complainace with local law. The bill also prohibits civil penalities for violations recorded by these monitoring devices from exceeding certain amounts, based on the annual income of the owner or drvier of the vehicle. Legislation of this type that grants counties an additional tool to ensure the safety of their communities is always welcome, though the Maryland Association of Counties (MACo) requests that the General Assembly consider an amendment authorizing the balance of collected fines to be used broadly for public safety purposes, rahter than only for pedestrian safety.

From the MACo Testimony:

In addition to the enhanced security and order these programs help local governments maintain, they also help to support other public safety measures that keep these communities thriving. With an automated option for enforcing motor vehicle laws and violations, there is great potential to divert costs associated with law enforcement personnel who would typically be tasked with motor vehicle monitoring. These savings can be reinvested in other areas, while maintaining compliance and calming neighborhoods via the automated monitoring system. One amendment would benefit the flexible authority afforded under HB 367. Counties support an amendment to authorize the balance of collected fines to be used for public safety purposes (a term used and defined in current law) rather than only pedestrian safety (newly added by HB 367 as drafted). This would grant each local jurisdiction the ability to apply any new resources in accordance with specific needs, in line with the current law governing other automated safety systems.

More on MACo’s Advocacy:

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