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Traffic cameras to get a 3-month extension in Lynnwood

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By Rikki King
Herald Writer
@rikkiking
Published:
LYNNWOOD -- The city of Lynnwood is extending its traffic-enforcement camera contract for three months.
City leaders said they didn't want to sign a new contract with American Traffic Solutions until a lawyer finishes investigating the police department's relationship with the company. The multimillion-dollar contract is set to expire in November.
The lawyer's investigation is expected to wrap up by the end of October. It is expected to cost up to $15,000.
The temporary extension was approved at Monday night's City Council meeting.
The decision came after Mayor Don Gough hired attorney Patricia Eakes in August to investigate whether two Lynnwood police officers demonstrated conflicts of interest in their communications with American Traffic Solutions, the Arizona company that operates the city's traffic-enforcement cameras.
The decision to hire the lawyer came days after The Herald used public records law to obtain emails that documented Deputy Police Chief Karen Manser asking a camera company official about job prospects as she opened negotiations to renew the contract.
The emails also showed traffic unit Sgt. Wayne "Kawika" Davis offered to help the company market their cameras in other cities and states. He also offered to help lobby against proposed legislation that sought to minimize how much money cities could charge for traffic-camera violations.
A temporary extension agreement already has been drawn up, according to a city memo posted online last week. Once it is signed, the contract will remain in effect until February.

Rikki King: 425-339-3449; rking@heraldnet.com.
Story tags » LynnwoodPoliceTraffic Safety

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