HUMBLE, Texas – The eyes in the skies are watching drivers closely in Humble.
Multiple drivers KPRC 2 Investigates spoke with at FM 1960 and the Northbound 59 feeder road took no time in pointing out the red light cameras prominently placed at the westbound direction of the intersection.
Drivers made it clear that they have been pegged in the past for violating the red light.
Viewers have contacted KPRC 2 Investigates asking why they still exist, especially after Governor Greg Abbott signed a bill in 2019 banning them.
Sergeant Jack Burt with the Humble Police Department said, “No they’re not enforceable.”
Yet, Humble is one of four cities in Texas that still has them.
The reason? “The way House Bill 1631 was written, there are certain cities that could not get out of their contract by the way the contract was written,” Burt says.
So while they cannot charge people for them, the city of Humble is contractually tied to San Antonio-based lawyers who continue to send collection letters on their behalf for payment, even though drivers cannot be charged.
When we asked Burt why the letters are still being sent, he paused and said, “It’s just the way the contract was written.”
Humble’s City Manager says if the letters aren’t sent, then it violates the contract.
The city admits they collected $2.2 million dollars in 2020, down by $800,000 dollars to the last legal year of the cameras.
Aside from drivers not having to pay, the city admits the involvement of collection letters or not paying does not impact their credit score.