Cedar Rapids settles class action lawsuit over traffic camera allegations

Automatic traffic cameras on an overhead sign structure along Interstate 380 in Cedar Rapids on May 13, 2019 (Mary Green/KCRG)
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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The city of Cedar Rapids has agreed to terms in a settlement over issues alleged with the automated traffic enforcement cameras, according to city officials at Tuesday's city council meeting.

In December 2018, a group of 10 plaintiffs filed a class-action lawsuit against the city in Linn County District Court. The suit, lead by conservative radio host Simon Conway, alleged that the city violated state laws about the statute of limitations and due process.

The lawsuit specifically centered around the imposition of late fees pursuant to changes in the city's traffic camera ordinance after tickets were issued to the plaintiffs.

The two parties agreed to settle the case, though exact terms of the settlement were not immediately available. The city said it was to avoid the time and expense of a trial.

Persons who are eligible for a refund will be contacted by an outside agency called First Class, Inc. They will provide instructions to the 20,900 people affected by the settlement.

The city said that, out of 450,000 citations issued between March 2, 2010, and August 31, 2018, only around 8 percent of them could have been involved in the lawsuit.

The settlement includes approximately $3 million in fees collected through the state offset program, according to city officials.