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FORT WORTH (CBS 11 I-TEAM) – If a red light camera catches you breaking the law, you can expect a $75 dollar fine; $100 in some cases if you pay late. But a lot of drivers are refusing to pay their fines and the cities that have those cameras can’t do much about it.
“For people like me that did pay it, I was a little upset with that,” Kelly Cannon, an Arlington resident said. “Because, you know, it’s not fair.”
In 2013, Arlington issued 92,941 red light camera notices sent out. They closed out the year with 27,461 unpaid fines. One city over, in Fort Worth, there were 195,906 tickets issued and 71,414 left outstanding.
For more than a year, leaders from Arlington, Fort Worth and several mid-cities had been working with Tarrant County on a solution to their backlog problem. They tried to get the tax collector-assessor to help enforce the tickets by withholding your car registration. This practice is actually allowed in Texas and is called the Scofflaw. But neither Tarrant county commissioners nor Ron Wright, the Tarrant County Tax Collector-Assessor, thought using the Scofflaw was appropriate.
“There’s a lot of complaints with regard to how these things work. Whether it’s fair,” Wright told us.
But regular drivers aren’t the only people ignoring these fines. The CBS 11 I-Team uncovered video of city employee breaking the law and refusing to pay their tickets. Some got a straight-up free pass. When we questioned several cities, they told Investigative Reporter Mireya Villarreal they had no intention of paying their fines.
Which employees got the free pass and which cities are refusing to pay? Watch the full story on CBS 11 News at 10 on Monday night and chat about it on social media using #WhatsTheirExcuse.
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