ANNAPOLIS — Del. Jay Walker said he didn’t believe placing speed cameras along various portions of Route 210 was necessary to control drivers’ speed.
The state lawmaker from Fort Washington understood the need when police recorded a decrease in citations and car crashes. He also noticed drivers slowing down on the nearly 21-mile highway in southern Prince George’s County labeled one of the most dangerous roads in the state of Maryland.
He said data supported the need on Route 210, but he doesn’t support installing speed cameras all over the county, partly because the company which owns the devices receives the majority of money from citations.
“It’s a large revenue generator. I think we should talk to the citizens of Prince George’s County further,” Walker said before he voted against a fourth proposal to install speed cameras in certain residential districts and near schools. “Montgomery County, here we come.”
The Prince George’s House Delegation, composed of state lawmakers who represent the jurisdiction, voted Friday to recommend approval on four pieces of legislation to install speed monitoring devices, or cameras, at intersections in the county.
Although Del. Alonzo Washington (D-District 22) of Greenbelt supported the measure to place them in certain residential areas and school zones, he did join Walker to vote against the remaining three bills.
If approved by the full General Assembly, the other three places in the county include not more than two cameras at the southern intersection of Suitland Road and Skyline Drive in Camp Springs; and not more than one speed camera on an estimated two-mile stretch along Church Road between Old Stage Road and Dunwood Valley Drive in Bowie.
The other piece of legislation would permit installation of speed cameras along Route 382 Croom (Croom Road) between Mount Calvert and Molly Berry roads in Upper Marlboro. However, the bill doesn’t state exactly how many cameras would be installed. The intersections are slightly four miles apart.
The majority of lawmakers supported the measures to improve driver safety and hopefully encourage motorists to slow down.
“I think all of us have been requested by members of our constituencies to help them with speed control,” said Del. Andrea Harrison (D-District 24) of Springdale.
Walker presented an amendment for some revenue generated from the speed cameras go toward safety improvements such as crosswalks, or sidewalks. The Prince George’s delegation could review the measure this week.
Meanwhile, the four speed camera bills are scheduled for a public hearing on March 6 before the House Environment and Transportation Committee.