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A motorist drives by the Waterloo police Jeep equipped with automated traffic enforcement cameras Thursday in Waterloo.

WATERLOO — The Waterloo Police Department wants to change the way the city uses revenue from automated traffic enforcement cameras.

City Council members have been asked by Police Chief Dan Trelka to rescind a resolution adopted Aug. 21, 2017, requiring revenue from the cameras to be used for property tax relief two budget years after it is collected.

A proposed resolution set for consideration at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday in City Hall would allow the department to use the money for tax relief and hire additional personnel in the year it is generated.

The city hired Sensys Gatso USA, of Beverly, Mass., to provide red light cameras, hand-held speed enforcement cameras and a vehicle affixed with speed cameras, dubbed Rambo, that can be parked around the community to nab speeders.

Council members at the time unanimously agreed to use all of the revenue for property tax relief. The decision to collect a full year’s worth before budgeting to spend the citation revenue was based on the uncertain future of cameras, which were under threat of being repealed by the Iowa Legislature.

The automated enforcement program generated $90,000 in revenue during the fiscal year ending June 30, 2018, which would be available for the fiscal year 2020 budget council members set next March.

But the police department indicated the program is expected to generate more than $90,000 this year. And the cameras designed to catch motorists running red lights at traffic signals have yet to be installed.

Other scheduled council business includes the third and final reading of an ordinance raising sanitary sewer user fees by 5 percent effective Jan. 1 and another 5 percent beginning July 1, 2019.

City officials said the additional revenue is needed for sewer improvements the city agreed to make under a consent decree with the U.S. Department of Justice and Environmental Protection Agency.

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Waterloo City Reporter

Waterloo city reporter for the Courier

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