Roberts speaks out on gantry cameras
In an age where our every move can be tracked, one local state representative is trying to do her part to make sure that the state doesn’t pry in an attempt to bring in more money.
District 29’s Sherry Roberts (R- Coventry, West Greenwich) has proposed legislation that would effectively ban the state from using toll gantries to be built as part of the RhodeWorks plan to assist in the enforcement of traffic laws.
According to a release issued Tuesday by the State House, Roberts’ bill (H-7767) provides that no toll facility erected and/or operated shall engage, in any manner, in the enforcement or assistance in the enforcement of any traffic laws in effect except as specifically authorized in RI General Laws 42-13.1-11 and 42-13.1-12.
“I proposed this bill due to the initial RhodeWorks toll hearings where serious concerns were raised regarding the technology to be used on toll gantries as it relates to the privacy of passenger vehicles and the role that the government seeks to play in traffic enforcement,” Roberts explained. She then added, “Some of the gantry technology mentioned, involved having cameras, license plate readers and lasers to monitor passing vehicles. More specifically, concerns are that passengers will become vulnerable to increased traffic violations and potential abuses by the government if this technology is used on the gantries to enforce traffic violations such as speeding, illegal lane changes and various other infractions whenever our government wants to enhance their revenue stream. Giving the RI DOT such wide discretion to use this thoroughly intrusive technology is likely to become a means by which to impose an oppressive taxation and burden on the citizens of Rhode Island.”
“It is no secret that our government has abused and does abuse power and is insatiable for more money,” stated Roberts. “Our job here is to protect our constituents from this form of abuse and this bill says the gantry can’t be used for traffic violation enforcement.”