CLEARWATER — Two of the city's most crash-prone intersections will be watched by red-light cameras beginning early next year, the City Council voted Tuesday.
Council members voted 3-2 to approve a contract with Redflex, which will monitor the eastbound and westbound lanes at Belcher Road and Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard and eastbound lanes of Chestnut Street and Fort Harrison Avenue.
The contract includes a rare pilot program that says if red-light violations decrease at those intersections within six months, the contract will automatically extend to three years. To cancel without cause before term's end, the city would need to pay up to $27,000 per camera.
Vice Mayor George Cretekos and council member Paul Gibson, who dissented, criticized the contract's rigid terms, pointing out that if red-light violations decreased but accidents from sudden stops increased, the city would be stuck in the contract.
Mayor Frank Hibbard and council members John Doran and Bill Jonson supported the cameras, saying they would make roads safer and decrease accidents.