May 4, 2009
One of the more pleasant aspects of the speed camera debate is that you’ll find as much opposition to scameras from liberals as you will from conservatives. The issue usually brings people together across traditional party divides.
In Maryland, however, Governor Martin O’Malley (D) rammed the freeway speed camera bill through the General Assembly and created a significant partisan backlash. Here’s the Maryland Republican Party press release from today:
MDGOP Endorses Speed Camera Petition Drive
Unanimous Vote by Party’s Executive Committee
ANNAPOLIS—Last weekend, the Maryland Republican Party’s Executive Committee unanimously endorsed petitioning SB 277, the recently passed Speed Camera legislation to referendum.
“The Maryland Republican Party is proud to support Maryland for Responsible Enforcement’s Speed Camera Ballot Initiative,” said MDGOP Chairman Jim Pelura. “This is another tax being placed on the citizens of Maryland and there are mixed reviews as to whether this promotes safety on the highways.”
“Perhaps worst of all, if you receive a ticket from one of these cameras there is no ability to face your accuser in court. It’s your word against a machine, which is how Martin O’Malley and the Democrats in Annapolis want it,” Pelura continued. “They want to find every avenue they can to wring the money out of hard-working taxpayers. The Maryland Republican Party says ‘enough’ and we stand strongly behind placing this bill on the ballot in 2010 for the people to decide.”
We hope that having party support will bring the additional resources that will be needed to get the required signatures by the deadline. We also hope the Democratic Party realizes the need to get on board the referendum effort and stand on the side of the public, not on the side of a greedy politician. Learn more about how you can help gather signatures here.
April 29, 2009
The petition sponsored by “Maryland for Responsible Enforcement” to force Senate Bill 277 (authorizing the statewide use of speed cameras) to a referendum is now ready to be signed.
The rules for forcing a new law to a public vote in Maryland are extremely strict. A total of over 57,000 valid signatures must be collected, and signatures can be disqualified for many reasons, with 1/3 of those signatures submitted before may 30 and the rest by June 30. You must be registered to vote in Maryland in order to sign the petition. (If you are a Maryland resident but are not registered to vote, go REGISTER TO VOTE right now. If you don’t vote you have no right to complain). Your name must appear on the petition exactly as it appears on your voter registration (there is a tool you can use to check your voter registration).
If you only want to sign the petition, you can go to www.mdscamera.com to print, sign, and mail the petition. Be sure to read the complete instructions for petition signers before sending in your form. However what is really needed is for you to gather signatures. If you know others who might be willing to sign, please read the “instructions for those collecting signatures” and then ask them to sign as well. Better yet, go out and circulate the petition wherever you can.
MRE needs to receive the first batch of signatures by 5/25/2009. Please spread the word about this effort as widely and as quickly as possible. Senate Bill 277 significantly reduces YOUR rights as a maryland driver to face your accuser, gives an unreasonable amount of new power to local government, and will create the legal precedent and the physical infrastructure for even more sweeping mass surveillance and machine enforcement of drivers in the future. This affects everyone who lives in or visits the state of Maryland. The People deserve a real public debate and a direct vote on this issue and your signature and petition gathering efforts can make that possible.