• Palm Bay fights red-light camera ticket refunds

    Updated:

    PALM BAY, Fla. - Palm Bay put the brakes on its red-light camera program months ago.
     
    But now the city is being sued by a driver who paid a ticket before the state approved the use of the cameras.

    Attorneys for that man want to make it a class action case, but a judge ruled today that the driver doesn't best represent the class impacted by Palm Bay's ordinance. He paid a red-light ticket that was issued not to him, but to the owner of the car.
     
    Attorneys for Thomas Patch, who was caught on a Palm Bay red-light camera, said he and nearly 4,000 others who paid tickets to Palm Bay before red-light cameras were authorized by the state are owed a refund.
     
    Patch was not in court when his attorneys argued that Palm Bay's red-light program began in 2008, when it wasn't authorized by the state. 
     
    They also pointed out that a recent Florida Supreme Court ruling said red-light camera programs established before legislative approval were done so illegally.
     
    Attorneys for Palm Bay said the ruling doesn't state that cities should start writing refund checks.
     
    For those who made the decision to pay, it's the city's position they're not entitled to a refund.


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