Red Light Camera Bill Receives Initial Approval

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COLUMBIA — State lawmakers took off for their spring break this year but not before the Missouri House gave initial approval to a bill that would let cities continue using red-light cameras.

The bill passed by an 84-63 vote Thursday and will face one more vote to finalize the legislation before moving on.

Columbia stopped prosecuting those caught by the cameras last year after several court cases ruled traffic ordinances similar to Columbia's were illegal. 

The courts said the ordinence violated state law and should count as a moving violation. 

Under the bill, tickets would be maxed out at $135, and no points would go on a driver's record. 

The cameras were a source of revenue for the city and provided $100,000 from 2010 to 2012.

The bill faced fierce opposition in the Missouri House. Opponents said the bill did not allow a chance to face a person's accuser and did not provide a process for appealing the tickets. 

Missouri has been stockpiling tickets since last year and may attempt to prosecute if the bill is passed. 

The bill would still need to be passed by the state Senate before it becomes law.