As state and local governments struggle to keep up with their reckless spending in this economic downturn, more and more cities are installing red light camera to fine motorists and help bridge the revenue gap in their budgets. It seems like these things are everywhere now, which makes me love this story of how a couple in Florida fought the city over one of these tickets and won. How did they do it? By confirming that the cycle for the yellow light had been set too short according to county guidelines. The husband simply went out the the light where the ticket was issued with a stopwatch and timed the yellow light cycle to find in 15 instances the average cycle for the yellow was 3.8 seconds compared to 4.5 seconds required by law. He was able to get the county to concede the cycle was too short and the ticket was dismissed. How widespread is the issue? This fellow checked a total of 65 intersections in the area and found only 7 lights that meet the requirement.
Not specifically personal finance related, but I thought it was an interesting story to pass along.