The Kansas City Council is considering revising its efforts to nab red-light runners in an effort to satisfy legal concerns.
A Missouri court of appeals ruling meant that the current ordinance was unconstitutional because the city was writing tickets to the owner of the vehicle even though they had no way to prove who was actually driving the vehicle at the time of the offense.
That meant the city had to put the brakes on its 18 red-light cameras, and 22,000 drivers could disregard warrants and fines. They are no refunds for any payments of fines.
But Councilman John Sharp, a longtime supporter of the cameras, thinks a change to the ordinance can get the city back in the red-light camera business.
"Under the ordinance that we'll be putting forth next week, it's considered a rebuttal presumption that if you own the vehicle, you are the driver. But, you can furnish an affidavit saying no, someone else is the driver and you have to name them," Sharp said.
If the council adopts the change, then the ordinance would take effect 10 days later. But more legal challenges would be likely.
In addition, the court of appeals ruling is now under consideration by the Missouri Supreme Court, which could uphold the appeals court ruling or could allow the city to enforce the current ordinance that issues the ticket to the vehicle's owner.
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