COLUMBUS, Miss. (WCBI) – Tuesday evening, the Columbus Metropolis Council voted to contract with SECURIX Techniques to put in cameras all over the metropolis to scan license plates and establish and fantastic uninsured drivers.
SECURIX says Mississippi has the highest share of uninsured cars and trucks in the country. Nevertheless, Vice Mayor and Ward 2 Councilman Joe Mickens claims the alternative is not that basic for numerous individuals in Columbus.
“Do I pay my insurance coverage or do I feed my young children? Do I pay back my insurance…or do I spend lease?” the vice mayor presented as illustrations.
“This is a really low-income region in the town,” Vice Mayor Mickens extra. “A lot of our folks are residing underneath the poverty line.”
It is a single of the causes that he and Mayor Keith Gaskin are hesitant about the decision to convey SECURIX Systems’ Automated License Plate Reader method to Columbus to reduce down on uninsured driving.
“The first issue that arrived to my intellect was, we had a (comparable) technique in listed here ahead of, a few several years again, where by they experienced cameras in the course of the town of Columbus,” Vice Mayor Mickens states. “And it did not work then.”
The cameras choose photographs of the license plate of any motor vehicle driving by. The pics are then run by means of a databases of all uninsured Mississippi automobiles. Citations are issued to those people devoid of coverage. SECURIX states that all those tickets have the possible to develop thousands and thousands of dollars in earnings for Columbus in just 5 decades.
But the vice mayor isn’t confident this is the greatest time to set this sort of a program into spot.
“When you really search at it, the make-up of the city, we’re on the lookout at folks that dwell under the poverty line,” he claims. “We’re coming out of a poor COVID predicament and a good deal of people are pressured out.”
Point out legislation requires all Mississippi drives to carry evidence of insurance coverage. But Columbus resident Pat Gurganus claims these cameras experience like an invasion of privateness.
“It’s just a suitable to have the freedom to drive down the street and not be watched by Huge Brother,” she says.
Nevertheless, fellow Columbus driver Christopher Williams does see some of the rewards.
“It might be a very little little bit of an serious, unquestionably a measure a federal government or a point out would consider to be certain that uninsured motorists continue to be off the street, but I really don’t feel it is completely negative.”
And Vice Mayor Mickens agrees.
“I’m not totally towards the cameras, but as the mayor and I mentioned it, the timing, we really don’t have to rush into this,” he says. “My decision very last night was not to shoot it down, my decision was to table it.”
SECURIX describes its service as a general public security program and states the citations could in fact aid motorists stay away from bigger fines and court docket appearances.
Associates from the enterprise told the metropolis council it would get in between two and a few months to have the procedure up and managing.