Sioux City has filed a lawsuit seeking to block the state Department of Transportation’s new rules limiting traffic enforcement cameras.
Assistant City attorney, Justin Vondrak, filed the judicial review action in Woodbury County District Court and says the DOT regulations make it almost impossible for the city to use speed cameras along Interstate 29 within the city limits. “What we’re asking for is a review of the rules and to eventually have the rules determined to be unconstitutional based on the city’s home rule authority, as well as other Iowa code sections which grant the city joint jurisdiction with the DOT for traffic enforcement upon the primary roadways within the city’s jurisdiction,” according to Vondrak.
The suit asks a judge to stop the rules or at least put them on hold until the lawsuit is resolved and maintains that the rules are too broad. The DOT rules took effect February 12th, though agency director Paul Trombino says cities don’t have to immediately remove cameras.
Vondrak says the city will leave the cameras in play using the new regulations. “We’re still going to comply with the rules, we’re still going to do the filing that the DOT has requested, as well as file reports,” Vondrak says.Vondrak says red light cameras are also still being used at various intersections in the city.
Under the new rules, local agencies must prove to the DOT that the cameras are targeting “high-crash or high-risk locations,” and they must justify renewal every year.
(Reporting by Woody Gottburg, KSCJ, Sioux City)