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Vote “Yes” to end traffic cameras

To the editor:

As Americans, we all know and remember the famous words of Thomas Jefferson found in the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by the Creator with certain inalienable rights.” Sadly, many have forgotten what proceeds next: “That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.”

This philosophy – the consent of the governed – is fundamental to the American system of government and establishes an important precedent; namely, that the will of the people shall be the basis of government’s authority.

For the past two years, this principle has been egregiously abused by the elected leaders of East Liverpool. These leaders have strenuously fought to disallow citizens from exercising their constitutional right to petition their local government and bring the traffic camera issue to a vote. Regardless of one’s views regarding the cameras, this type of voter suppression must not be tolerated!

Now, two years later, citizens will finally be able to vote on this contentious program. However, because of a lawsuit filed by the City of East Liverpool to disallow voting on this issue, voters will not know the outcome of the election until sometime after November 5 or perhaps ever.

We, the East Liverpool Citizens Against Traffic Cameras, promise to continue fighting in court to make sure your voice is heard and the votes counted, but all of this will be for nothing without your voting yes to end the traffic cameras!

A yes vote on the proposed ordinance by petition will eliminate the ticket by mail scheme currently being utilized by the City of East Liverpool. It will once again require police officers to pull over dangerous drivers, assess the situation, and issue a ticket at the time and location of the alleged violation. It will also disallow the city from contracting with a camera vendor if payment to the vendor is contingent on the number of tickets issued or fees collected.

If speeding is such a threat to our city, pull drivers over and issue a ticket with a criminal penalty. Don’t send them a civil ticket in the mail days, weeks, or even months later. Police should never be placed in a position where they have an incentive to profit off the citizens they’re sworn to protect and serve. Yet that’s where we find ourselves thanks to this administration.

No, the truth is the cameras exist to generate revenue and that’s why we ask you to vote yes to end traffic cameras.

Donald Bean,

East Liverpool

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