The massive planned increase in traffic fines is ironic. While I fully support the notion of responsible driving I do not believe that the core motivation behind the traffic fine increase is primarily towards behaviour change.
Since I serve on the Finance Portfolio of the City of Cape Town we receive the traffic income budget on a monthly basis. This budget is important as it generates an additional income for the city since the city is losing money from reduced profits on electricity sales and so on. Increases in rates amongst other charges are already on the cards. This income is not enough due to constant service demands.
Ironically, the city has spent millions of ratepayer’s money on tactics to encourage consumers to reduce electricity. This seemed to have worked and backfired simultaneously. Now the city requires another income stream and that is where increased fines come in. Councillors have been discussing some of these issues in both the Finance and Energy and Climate Change Portfolio for many months.
That hundreds of law enforcement officials are in danger of losing their work because of a reduced salary budget also speaks volumes. This implies that most of the work of data capturing will be done via camera. Traffic officers hiding behind trees may become a memory as cameras peer from high up on buildings.
Again while the behaviour change is necessary to reduce the level of stupidity on our roads, the truth must always remain relevant if success is required.
Cllr Yagyah Adams
Cape Muslim Congress