Some red light cameras will do double-duty as speeder catchers. (Contributed)

B.C. cities brace for possible drop in traffic fine revenue

Province wants to discuss revenue-sharing agreement as traffic enforcement expected to improve

The province and the Union of B.C. Municipalities are set to discuss how they will share the increased fine revenue set to come in from upgrades to red-light cameras and electronic ticketing.

Surrey Coun. Bruce Hayne, who sits on the UBCM executive, said the province told the organization it was looking to amend how the revenues are shared, aiming to have a new agreement signed by the end of spring.

In its letter dated Wednesday, Municipal Affairs Selina Robinson cited the “ongoing expansion of automated traffic enforcement,” including the new red-light cameras used to catch speeders.

Announced in March, the “intersection camera system” will be able to issue speeding tickets automatically, as well as tickets for running a red light.

READ: B.C. upgrades red light cameras to catch speeders

Additional, police in Vancouver and Delta have been testing out new electronic tickets in the past couple of months that allow them to simply swipe a driver’s licence to log all of the information.

Currently, the province collects the fines and redistributes between $50-60 million to municipalities of more than 5,000 people. That amounts to the net revenue, minus any administrative costs. Smaller cities get a refund through a reduction in the police tax.

“Municipalities don’t have much in the way of tools to negotiate,” Hayne said. “I guess what I’m saying is that at the end of the day the province will tell us what the deal will be.”

He did say the NDP government has been “very collaborative” so far, and hoped the outcome won’t cut into one of the few revenue sources cities have. Currently, most of the money cities are able to raise come from property taxes.

Raising those is never popular, he said, but municipalities could be forced to do so if traffic fine revenue drops.

“We know that policing costs are going up on a yearly basis,” Hayne said.

“All of the protective services for anything to do with cannabis legalization?” he added. “That’s going to fall on local government.”


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Highway 97 closed at Clinton Sunday morning

Highway 97 is currently closed in both directions at Clinton.

Voters head to the polls in Williams Lake

CRD boardroom office, Marie Sharpe gymnasium become polling stations

Lakecity local returns home to take over HDS Flooring

Hopkins Design Studio Flooring under new management.

New denturist pleased to bring his talents to lakecity

The Lake City Denture Clinic may have a new denturist but the commitment to quality remains the same

Williams Lake’s Home Hardware moulds its business model to the needs of the Cariboo

Williams Lake’s Home Hardware Building Centre invites people to come in and see all it has to offer.

Tommy Chong says cannabis legalization makes him proud to be a Canadian

Legendary marijuana advocate and comedian celebrates cultural milestone at Kelowna event

B.C. Liberals’ hopes high as Nanaimo by-election approaches

Historically safe NDP seat vacated by long-time MLA Leonard Krog

Leaving B.C.’s electoral reform to a referendum is ‘ridiculous’: professor

B.C. voters getting ballots in the mail on proposal to change electoral system

Canada condemns killing of journalist in Saudi Arabia consulate in Turkey

The Saudi government claimed Jamal Khashoggi was killed in a ‘fistfight’

One year to election: Trudeau Liberals gear up for tussles on climate, premiers

Analysts say that the Liberals have reason to be ‘fairly confident’

GUEST COLUMN: B.C.’s proportional representation vote is dishonest, misleading

Veteran of 2005 Citizens’ Assembly urges rejection of new voting systems

Prank pizzas delivered to B.C. mayor on election night

The fake orders happened throughout Victoria mayor’s re-election campaign

MLA to become Nanaimo’s next mayor, could weaken NDP’s grasp on power

Leonard Krog’s win will trigger a byelection when he gives up his provincial seat

Horvat nets OT winner as Canucks beat Bruins 2-1

Young Vancouver star had spirited scrap earlier in contest

Most Read