In 2010, the Legislature amended state law to preempt regulation of red light cameras to the state. However, before those changes took place in 2010, local governments adopted red light camera ordinances to cite and find drivers who ran red lights. On November 7, 2013, the Florida Supreme Court heard oral arguments in two consolidated cases dealing with the legality of local ordinances that authorize red-light cameras prior to 2010. Case No.: SC12-644 & SC12-1471 Richard Masone v. City of Aventura and City of Orlando v. Michael Udowychenko, etc., et al.
At issue in these appeals is whether state law preempted those municipal ordinances. The cases made it to the Supreme Court after conflicting decisions came out of the Third and Fifth District Courts of Appeal. On Thursday, lawyers for the drivers argued that Chapter 316,F.S., requires uniform application of traffic laws throughout the state and expressly preempts municipalities from enacting an alternate or non-parallel form of traffic enforcement and penalty. Conversely, lawyers for the cities argued that because the legislature has delegated some authority to municipalities to pass certain traffic ordinances specifically those in section 316.008, F.S., preemption does not apply to the red-light cameras. Supreme Court justices vigorously questioned both sides and moved beyond issues of express preemption, to those of implied preemption and conflict preemption. A final ruling is not expected for weeks.