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Red Light Cameras, Jazzercise, Laser Tag

Also this week, Newark schools brace for more budget cuts and Newark police join a CHP campaign that cracks down on distracted driving.

This week, our story on Newark’s red light cameras hit a nerve with Patch readers. More than 60 comments later, Patch readers shared their thoughts and experiences with red light camera tickets, traffic collisions and Newark roads.

Also this week, Newark traffic officers joined a zero-tolerance campaign aimed at drivers who use cell phones illegally and Newark school board members examined a financial plan that does not count on a voter-approved tax extension.

We also previewed the new laser tag operation at Stevenson Station Center.

Plus, Newark Patch highlighted Tri-Cities Jazzercise members who helped raise funds for the Make a Wish Foundation and a group who celebrated Afghan and Persian culture with its Nowroz festival at Swiss Park.

Coming up: Grab a bib and get ready to eat with your hands. We’ll take you inside Ray’s Crab Shack on Mowry Avenue. And we’ll preview Earth Day celebrations in the Bay Area.

Roger January 29, 2012 at 03:41 AM
Ban The Cams ! ! Join in the protest! Stop the Red Light Cameras ! When: Saturday, Feb 4th at 12:00 Noon Where: Corner of Mowry Ave. & Fremont Blvd. In Fremont Pick up a sign behind the Valero Gas Station. Why: Red Light Cameras are all about REVENUE and NOT about SAFETY Cities can extend the length of yellow lights by less than one second and cut violations in HALF. Over 50,000 tickets, $480 each, issued annually JUST in Alameda County takes over $20 million out of the local economy for no good reason. We are not ATM machines for Government. Cities aggressively enforce low speed right turn violations at nearly $500 per violation NOT for SAFETY reasons but for PROFIT. There is no data supporting such aggressive enforcement For more info or to be alerted about future demonstrations, email rlouisj@aol.com
Nadja Adolf October 15, 2012 at 07:43 PM
Look, red light cameras are only found in lower income areas. I have heard from a local woman that the city plans to shorten the yellow light time; if true that is the most definitive proof I have seen yet that the cameras are about revenue. The woman who told me this was driving an expensive imported convertible; she and her family are planning to leave Newark, noting that Newark does not take care of its own and seems to spend all of the resources on a few neighborhoods and attempting to encourage people to move in from other areas. She also noted that she has friends from all over the Bay Area who have been hit with the tickets. The City Council seems incapable of viewing the problems the city faces in a holistic fashion. Each issue is considered in isolation without considering unintended consequences. For example, our Council is so enamored of revenue from traffic violations that they placed red light cameras with short yellows around NewPark Mall and the Shopping Center at Four Corners. This does not encourage customers to return - and word of mouth reaches all around the Bay Area about the "traffic trap" in Newark. Then they blather endlessly about the need to "spend money to make money." Unfortunately, this means financing the development of projects that no developer would build without the subsidy because the market just isn't there.
Roger October 16, 2012 at 06:12 AM
Newark does not use a "short" yellow. In fact, it has yellow lights set 7/10's above the minimum. Cities that do that seldom make enough money to pay the camera rental price usually l$6,000 per month per camera. Newark's program however is highly profitable. They accomplish this by placing cameras at popular right turn lanes and thanks to the many motorists who make "Hollywood Stops" Newark makes a lot of money. Newark's program should not be known as a red light camera system, but a right turn camera system. Of 7,000 tickets issued annually only 600 are for straight thru violations. Over 6,000 go to right turners. The one camera at Cedar and Mowry (drivers turning right onto Mowry headed for 880) issues over 99% of violations to right turners. There are very few collisions which have ever been recorded there as a result of someone not fully stopping at the red light before turning. So, massive enforcement is not done for safety in spite of what believers say.
Roger December 25, 2012 at 04:08 AM
Nadja...As far a Newark is concerned, they proudly say their yellow lights are 7/10's longer than the minimum. Not quite true. The minimum for the speed limit is 3.6 seconds but often the speed of traffic has been measured at over 40 mph. Therefor 3.6 seconds is not long enough for many. Arguably, 4.3 seconds (which is what their yellows are set)is not either. You are correct that the Newpark Mall is their "high value" placement for cameras. Over 90% of tickets go to right-turners. Where is there any data concerning collisions occurring from illegal right turners. The number of citations going to those traveling north on Cedar and turning right on Mowry has exceeded 99% for some months. The cameras are for revenue. Vast numbers of right-on-red tickets must be issued just to raise revenue to send to Arizona. Newark has issued more tickets in 6 years than it has residents.

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