The company hired by the city of Killeen in 2007 to install and run red-light traffic cameras at several intersections is at the center of a scandal alleging the company used bribes to gain municipal contracts.
A Jan. 23 story headlined “Watchdog: Red light bribe scandal could be widespread” in the Chicago Tribune quotes a fired Redflex Traffic Camera Systems senior salesman alleging the company bribed officials with gifts “in dozens of municipalities” to get contracts.
The newspaper reported that Aaron Rosenberg, the fired Redflex senior salesman, claimed the company bribed officials in cities in several states, including Texas.
Hilary Shine, city of Killeen spokeswoman, said the city has had a working relationship with Redflex since 2007 and “has not experienced any improprieties.”
Jody Ryan, spokeswoman for Redflex, said in an emailed statement to the Herald that the company denies Rosenberg's allegations.
"Redflex will aggressively defend itself against the allegations as well as prosecute its claims against the former executive," she said. "We are committed to transparency and honesty in our business practices. Our focus continues to be on providing best in class customer service and technology to our clients to make their communities safer."
The city’s contract with Redflex, dated Aug. 29, 2007, states the agreement is in effect for five years, with the city having the option to extend its contract for up to two consecutive two-year terms. According to city documents, City Manager Glenn Morrison sent a letter to Redflex on Jan. 31, 2013, requesting the contract, which expired April 30 be extended through April 30, 2017.
Shine said Redflex approached the city to offer its services, but the city “experienced no improprieties during this approach nor since.”
Red-light cameras are at Stan Schlueter Loop and Central Texas Expressway; Fort Hood Street and Central Texas Expressway; Trimmier Road and Central Texas Expressway; W.S. Young Drive and Central Texas Expressway; and Lowe’s Boulevard and Trimmier Road.
The city accelerated getting the project off the ground in August 2007 when a bill passed by the Texas Legislature put restrictions on maximum fines and the use of funds collected. The city’s quick action grandfathered it in so that it wouldn’t be affected by the increase in restrictions.
Killeen collects about $14 for each $75 citation. The city splits fines with the state and Redflex.
Redflex is paid by the city on a tiered system. According to the contract, for the first 90 citations issued in a month, Redflex collects $48, $38 for 91 to 180 citations and $28 for more than 180 citations.
Funds the city receives through violations are designated for traffic and safety purposes through the Killeen Police Department.