Global Traffic Group Ltd. owner David Steer makes a presentation to Morinville Town Council on red light and stop sign cameras. – Lucie Roy Photo
by Lucie Roy
Global Traffic Group Ltd. owner David Steer and two colleagues came to the Mar. 15 Committee of the Whole meeting to make a presentation on the Town’s Automated Traffic Enforcement Program. Their primary focus was to give Council a first look at the stop sign and red light enforcement technology services that could be an addition to the program Global/ITS already offer.
Though Steer was clear the company was there merely to present to Council as a scheduled delegation, a format used to bring something to the attention of Council as information rather than a request for decision, Councillor Barry Turner, who was chairing the meeting until Deputy Mayor Rob Ladouceur arrived, intercepted Steer about the wording of the presentation.
“The language here is that the turnkey operation “will” include, it sounds like,” Turner said. “I just want to make it clear that right now there has been no decision in Morinville to apply this technology. That is so the public hears that. “Will” sounds like it will and we are not there.”
Steer went on to speak to Council about intersection safety, including stop signs and red light violations. The company have their own software and technology to be able to provide the red light cameras, typically valued at $100,000 each, to the town at no cost as mobile technology.
Steer said a box situated on the side of the road monitors violations and transfers the information to a peace officer who views the video. The government has given Global approval to post the violation video to a secure Internet site. The violator is provided a password to log into their page only and can view the video which shows clearly the violation occurring as opposed to photos in which the vehicles appears to be stopped.
Within three business days, tickets are in the mail and subsequent violations in the same week are given a warning.
Steer indicated camera methods are safer than stopping people manually and pulling them over. The idea is to give people the opportunity to improve their driving behaviour. The unit is mobile, so it wouldn’t always be in the same place.
Steer said the rollout of the program features one month of advertising to motorists, one month of warning tickets, and then ticketing will begin. Global Traffic Group covers all start-up costs and resources. There is no financial risk to the municipality for the equipment, but the town would have to enter into a three- to five-year contract with the company. Their turnkey solution includes peace officer training, enforcement equipment and vehicles, software, signage, maintenance, public advertising and awareness, and the statistical analysis and reporting required by both the municipality and the solicitor general.
After the presentation, Councillor Stephen Dafoe made a motion to table any discussion on the new technology until the Town’s Photo Enforcement Policy is reviewed, and to begin that review at the April Committee of the Whole meeting.
Mayor Holmes also echoed the sentiment to review the policy first.
“I feel like one of the only things in life we are actually proactive on. We are proactive on getting radar but not proactive on other things,” Holmes said. “I think this should get tabled until [we are] ready [for it] to come back.”
Dafoe’s motion passed unanimously.
David Steer, what a great guy, he’s come to Morinville to save us all. If only we had, RCMP, Provincial Sheriff’s, Town Bylaw officers, County of Sturgeon Bylaw officers that would be able to hand out traffic tickets. Thanks goodness Mr. Steer got council to set up photo radar out of the goodness of his heart. Now he has the ability to make sure no one rolls through a stop sign, all because he’s worried about us small town folk. Please!! this guy doesn’t care about Morinville, all we are is a cash cow to him. If Morinville decided to let their own enforcement officers look after this problem Mr. Steer would never step foot or think of our town again.