A pivotal vote on a bill that would set standards on how, and if, Ohio cities can use redlight cameras ran into another detour yesterday.
Four last-minute amendments delayed a vote on House Bill 56 in the Senate Highways and Transportation Committee. Committee Chairman Sen. Jeffry Armbruster, R-North Ridgeville, postponed the vote for a week to see if yet a ninth version of the bill needs to be drafted.
In particular, Armbruster said, he delayed the vote to discuss an amendment offered by Sen. Kevin Coughlin, R-Cuyahoga Falls, that would expand when cities can use cameras to ticket speeders.
It's another possible change in an ever-changing bill.
Last year, the House passed a bill backed by Rep. Jim Raussen, R-Springdale, that would outlaw the cameras unless an officer is present to witness the violation. The bill was repeatedly altered by the Senate committee, which settled on a version a month ago that allowed the cameras in some circumstances.
For example, cameras could be allowed to nab speeders in school zones and ticket redlight runners as long as the photos identified the driver.
Coughlin's amendment would broaden where cameras could be used to nab speeders to any roads where the speed limit is under 45 mph.
Why have we not eliminated these horrendous invasions of privacy and a huge step towards big brother in Ohio? Why are Republicans, defenders of limited government, even thinking about allowing government revenue collection to go on auto-pilot?
If I wanted big brother, I'd vote Democrat.
If I wanted a nanny, I'd vote for Mike DeWine.
I knew that there was not a dime's bit of difference between the parties, but I always figured that when the accounting was done, you'd at least find a nickel and a few pennies.
I begin to wonder...