HARTFORD -- Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Tuesday offered qualified support for a renewed legislative effort to install cameras to catch and penalize overeager motorists who run red traffic lights.

Reacting to plans announced Monday by Senate Majority Leader Martin M. Looney to legalize so-called red-light cameras, Malloy suggested that encouraging driver safety should be the overall goal, not reaping more revenue or saddling drivers with negative points toward higher insurance rates and the possible loss of their licenses.

"I've always supported electronic means," Malloy told reporters in the Capitol. "This is not 100 years ago. There are different technologies."

While the state office of the American Civil Liberties Union helped defeat the proposal last year amid charges that cameras intrude on civil rights, Malloy told reporters that he has favored such tactics to cut down on intersection crashes.

"Maybe a ticket issued that way doesn't carry points, or it carries a lower fine," Malloy said. "What we should really be using that technology for is to change habits, so the level of penalty, maybe, should be adjusted to allow the technology to be used to change the long-term behavior pattern."

Looney, D-New Haven, plans to reintroduce the legislation when the General Assembly starts its brief, budget-adjustment session Feb. 8.

Under the technology, violators' license plates would be traced by police through photographs and fine notices would then be mailed to the owners of the vehicles.