Sunday, August 1, 2010

Debate Stalls Use Of Cameras As Insurance Spies; Oklahoman Focuses On Henry's Fundraising Plan

By Randy Ellis/The Oklahoman ~ A proposed traffic camera system being counted on by state leaders to generate at least $50 million in revenues from uninsured drivers this fiscal year has run into roadblocks.
Read the history of the highway traffic 'spy' camera proposal by typing InsureNet in the TMRO archives block at top left.
American Insurance Association attorney Jeramy Rich says existing technology has weaknesses, and claims many insured Oklahoma motorists are going to be harassed with undeserved fine notices if the system is implemented.

Jonathan Miller, chairman of a company that is part of a consortium competing for the contract, disagrees. Miller contends a good system can be put in place, but says continued delays could jeopardize the system's ability to produce $50 million this fiscal year.

Bids for the project were opened more than 2½ months ago.

Wellon Poe, general counsel for the Oklahoma Department of Public Safety, can't predict how much longer the bid review process might take.

"We're trying to evaluate everything from how it's going to be done to who's going to do it," he said. "There have been no final decisions on any of it."

Oklahoma Insurance Department officials estimate between 18 and 23 percent of vehicles on Oklahoma roads are uninsured. The contract calls for fixed or mobile cameras to photograph license plates on moving vehicles. Computers would transmit the data and match it to insurance verification information on national, state and insurance company databases

Read more from this Tulsa World article at

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