Virginia law allows speed cameras in work zones

May 6, 2020

Keith Goble

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A new law in Virginia authorizes speed cameras in school and work zones around the state.

Gov. Ralph Northam signed into law the bill one year after delaying enactment of the legislation to authorize automated enforcement on roadways.

Governor stepped in

A year ago Virginia state legislators overwhelmingly approved a bill to permit the State Police to use speed cameras in highway work zones.

Gov. Northam used his authority over legislation to recommend that state lawmakers reconsider the issue during the 2020 regular session before approving any changes. The state’s Constitution allows the governor to sign, veto or propose changes to legislation that is sent to his desk.

“The provisions of the first and second enactments of this act shall not become effective unless reenacted by the 2020 session of the General Assembly,” Northam stated in his amendment to the 2019 version.

Specifically, he was concerned about the revenue distribution formula that largely benefited the State Police. The state’s school system would receive a much smaller portion of net profits.

Second time a charm

At the Democratic governor’s direction, a slew of lawmakers in his party this year introduced legislation to greenlight the use of speed cameras.

At least a dozen bills on the topic were introduced for consideration in both chambers.

The version approved by the House and Senate allows state and local police to post speed cameras in highway work zones and in school zones. The bill, HB1442, was approved mostly along party lines.

Automated tickets will be generated for vehicles exceeding the posted speed limit in affected areas by more than 10 mph. Violators would be mailed citations not to exceed $100.

Signs will be required to be posted within 1,000 feet of any speed camera.

A private camera company will receive information on vehicles in violation. The company will be responsible for sending out tickets after a law enforcement officer reviews each summons.

Revenue from citations issued by the State Police will be paid into the state’s literary fund. Citations issued by local police will stay with the locality.

The new law takes effect on July 1.

More Land Line coverage of news from Virginia is available.

Keith Goble

Keith Goble has been covering trucking-related laws since 2000. His daily web reports, radio news and “OOIDA’s State Watch” in Land Line Magazine are the industry’s premier sources for information regarding state legislative affairs.