EAST LIVERPOOL, Ohio (WKBN) – The majority of East Liverpool residents have voted to get rid of the city’s speed cameras.
Voters weighed in on the issue on Nov. 5, but the results were sealed due to an ongoing legal battle.
However, Judge Scott Washam ruled that temporary restraining orders issued in the case be dissolved. The Columbiana County Board of Elections was directed to release the results of the vote Tuesday afternoon and certify those election results.
According to the totals, 72% (1,560 people) voted to repeal the program in order to get rid of speed cameras. That’s compared to 28% (604 people) who voted “no” on repealing the program.
East Liverpool started using speed cameras in 2017.
The cameras bring in about $80,000 per month, 20% of which goes to the general fund and 80% to the police department.
The group “East Liverpool Citizens Against Traffic Cameras” has tried for the past several years to get the ballot issue before voters.
Attorneys Mark Hanni and Kevin Daley represented the group.
As of Tuesday, East Liverpool police can no longer use speed cameras — they must revert back to traditional radar.
“They can move for the court of appeals to put a stay on it, but I doubt if that’ll happen and I do see other municipalities following suit,” Hanni said.
“The East Liverpool Police Department will have to give traffic tickets in the traditional way — use radar, pull cars over — and from our personal beliefs, we believe that promotes public safety more so than traffic cameras do,” Daley said.
Hanni and Daley believe the lawsuit has set a precedent and said they wouldn’t be surprised if citizens from Youngstown or Girard take action next.
Hanni said residents in each of those municipalities were paying 40% of the revenue that was generated from speed camera tickets to a private company.
Our reporters reached out to East Liverpool Police Chief John Lane and Safety Service Director Brian Allen for comment but have yet to hear back.