Saskatchewan

Opposition NDP says Sask. photo radar too pricey

The opposition says the government is spending a "crazy" amount of money on its pilot program for photo radar in the province. The Saskatchewan NDP says the government's insurance company, SGI, should go back to the drawing board and find a cheaper solution.

Calls on government to scrap pilot and find cheaper, local option

The opposition says the government is spending a "crazy" amount of money on its pilot program for photo radar in the province. The Saskatchewan NDP says the government's insurance company, SGI, should go back to the drawing board and find a cheaper solution.

The province plans to have eight photo radar cameras installed in a number of high-risk areas around the province, including school zones in Regina, Saskatoon and Moose Jaw as well as busy roads such as Circle Drive in Saskatoon and the Ring Road in Regina. 

It says SGI put out a request for proposals and chose Xerox Canada, based in Edmonton, as the most cost-effective vendor. The company is being paid approximately $20,000 a month per camera or about $3.8m over the two year contract.

"We think that that's really costly, arguably crazy by way of cost," says Trent Wotherspoon, the NDP's deputy leader.  "We're calling on government to go back to the drawing board and make a plan that... is affordable and that works with Saskatchewan police authorities."

The government says employees of Xerox will not have access to SGI's database but rather will send the licence plate information from photographs to SGI.  The insurance comany will then send back the information for the registered owner. 

The government says the new cameras are expected to be installed later this month.

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