RED LIGHT CAMERAS
you haven't already done so, please read the Napa
section on the Camera Towns page
Documents (Program Ending Early 2017)
Some of Napa's tickets can possibly be
ignored. If your "ticket" does not have the Napa
County Superior Court's name and address on it, it is a
fake ticket, what I call a "Snitch Ticket." For
more details, see the Snitch Ticket section on the
Your Ticket page.
On Jan. 17, 2017, the City Council voted to end the program. See Set # 3, below.
Do you live in the South end of Alameda
County or the North end of Santa Clara County - State
Sen. Ellen Corbett's former District?
In late 2014 Sen. Corbett termed out,
and was replaced by this person
Please don't vote for him.
Send him back home to his bankruptcy law practice.
Docs Set # 1
Violations, Notices Printed 
New 6-11-10, updated 11-19-16
This table made by highwayrobbery.net, using reports provided by the City under the California Public Records Act.
The RedFlex-generated reports for Apr. 2009 to Apr. 2010 are included in Docs Set # 2, below.
RedFlex-generated reports for Apr. - Jun. 2010
NPD table prepared for Item 28A of 6-21-11 city council meeting 
NPD table prepared for Item 28B of 6-21-11 city council meeting 
The RedFlex-generated reports for Jan. - Mar. 2011 are included in Docs Set # 2, below.
RedFlex-generated reports for Feb. - Oct. 2011
RedFlex-generated reports for Oct. - Dec. 2011
RedFlex-generated reports for Jan. - Sept. 2012
RedFlex-generated reports for 2012 - 2013
RedFlex-generated reports for late 2013
RedFlex-generated reports for 2009 and early 2014
RedFlex-generated reports for Spring 2014
RedFlex-generated report for July 2014
RedFlex-generated reports for 2014 - 2015
RedFlex-generated reports for Apr. - Nov. 2015
RedFlex-generated reports for Dec. 2015 - June 2016
RedFlex-generated reports for Fall 2016
[ ] indicates a footnote.
 Totals are as provided by the City.
 This annual total, or annual projection, is by highwayrobbery.net.
 Any figures in red type (or, if you are looking at this table in black and white, the upper figure when there are two or more figures in a cell) are Total Violations, or all incidents recorded by the cameras, and due to time limitations may have been posted here only for selected months or locations. If there is sufficient public interest, the remaining months will be posted. The figures in black type are Notices Printed, and represent the sum of genuine citations issued (those filed with the court) plus any Nominations mailed (not filed with the court, a.k.a. Snitch Tickets).
 Monthly RedFlex-generated table has not been requested from the City.
 Details of direction of enforcement provided 11-14-11 by a local resident..
 On May 13, 2010 CalTrans lengthened the yellow at Hwy 29/Hwy121. If you have a ticket there, see Docs # 4, below.
 In its June 2011 response to the Mar. 2011 Grand Jury report, the City revealed that in Oct. 2010, and then again in Dec. 2010, it had effectively lengthened the yellow for rolling rights at Hwy 29/Hwy121. Read more in Docs # 4, below.
 Column # 2 was added on 6-19-11. The City prepared two tables for the city council meeting of June 21. Figures in Col. 2 above are from the table the City prepared (linked above) for Agenda Item 28A for the city council meeting of 6-21-11. *The City's table indicated that information for these months was not available at the time the report was written.
 Column # 3 was added on 6-19-11. Figures in Col. 3 above are from the table the City prepared (linked above) for Agenda Item 28B for the city council meeting of 6-21-11. Neither of the reports accompanying the June 2011 tables explains why the 28B table's figures for total right-turn-on-red violations ("RTOR Violations") in April-June 2010 exceed the figures for all violations (shown in Col. 1 above) obtained from the RedFlex-generated table (linked above) covering those months. Nor do we know why the 28B RTOR Violations do not agree with the RTOR Violations in Item 28A. Nor do we know why the number of citations issued at 29/121 during the first quarter 2011, as reported in the RedFlex-generated table (474), is 26% more than the 28B total (377) for the same three months.
 Official monthly reports not yet available.
 Right turn enforcement at this intersection ended in June 2011, so enforcement is only on the two southbound thru lanes.
 This camera was removed, temporarily, in early 2014. Article It was re-activated in May 2015. Article
 The report for this month was generated just a few days after the end of the month, so the number of tickets issued may be low.
 There was a big refund/dismissal of tickets issued between Aug. 1 and Dec. 2, 2015. See Set # 4, below.
Current Highlights in Napa
1. In Napa, the percentage of Cites Issued (vs. Events Recorded) is unusually high.
2. The big refund/dismissal of tickets issued between Aug. 1 and Dec. 2, 2015. And the other refunds/dismissals. See Set # 4, below.
3. The reincarnation of SOIM. In Jan. 2015 CalTrans lengthened the yellow there and ticketing immediately dropped by about 2/3, and stayed low for fifteen months; but then in Apr. 2016 the number of tickets started increasing, and by June 2016 it had doubled. See also Set # 8, below.
4. The 2015 - 2017 slow motion change of camera suppliers. See Set # 3, below.
Napa Docs Set # 2
"Late Time" Graphs
The City has provided bar graphs (or tables) of Late Times, etcetera, for all of its cameras.
These graphs track violations recorded, not tickets issued.
Where there is a large number of long Late Time violations in a curb lane, it is believed to indicate heavy ticketing on right turns.
(The curb lane will be the lane with the highest lane number.)
The picture above is an example from another city.
Graphs, May 2009
Graphs, April 2010, and RedFlex-generated Ticket Counts, Apr. 2009 to Apr. 2010
Graphs, April - June 2010
New-style table of Late Times, and RedFlex-generated Ticket Counts, Jan. to Mar. 2011
Graphs, Feb. 2010 to Oct. 2011
Graphs, Sept. 2011, 1212
Graphs, Sept. 2011, BRTR
Graphs, Sept. 2011, JEFI
Graphs, Sept. 2011, SOIM
Graphs, all cameras, Sept. 2012
Graphs, all cameras, Sept. 2013
Tabular version, all cameras, Nov. 2015
Bar graphs are available for more than fifty other cities - see the list in the expanded version of Defect # 9.
Napa Docs Set # 3
The 2008 contract included a "cost
neutrality" clause, whereby the city did not have to pay
RedFlex the full rent if the fines were insufficient to
cover the cost. See Subsection B. of Defect # 10.
Per an article
in the Napa Valley Register, on May 26, 2011 the
Appellate Division of the Napa County Superior Court
found Napa's cost neutrality clause to be
At its June 21,
2011 meeting, the city council voted 4 - 1 (Techel:
nay) to amend the contract to remove cost neutrality
(and the requirement for right turn enforcement), and
to extend the term to Jun. 2012. The staff
report for the June 21 meeting is available here.
was signed on Jul. 21. In
a July 25, 2011 Register article, the City disclosed
that it would resume issuing tickets on approx. Aug. 1.
Per an Oct. 8,
2011 Register article,
the City was dismissing 500 still-pending (not yet
paid) tickets issued under the old illegal
contract. (See the earlier Grand Jury
recommendation, in Set # 4, below.) The Register
said that Capt. Jeff Troendly said that already-paid
tickets in closed cases would not be refunded.
- the City failed to negotiate the
price, leaving the monthly rent for each of the
cameras at $6000.
In June 2012 the
police chief signed a one-year contract
extension. A July 6, 2012 Napa Valley
revealed that while he got the rent reduced to $1500 on
one camera, he agreed to continue paying $5670 and $6000
on the other three. Compared to a target rent of
$3000, Napa agreed to pay $86,040 too much over the
year, enough to pay a police officer's salary.
In June 2013 the
chief signed another one-year extension, to June
2014. He did not negotiate the price, so wasted
FAQ # 17 has many
more examples of what other California cities pay for
2014: Contract Extended
expired in June 2014, and a staff
report prepared for the June 17 council meeting
asked the council to approve a three-month extension to
give the police extra time to do a study.
The delay was costly. The City continued to pay
the existing high rent during the extra three
months, $21,510 flushed down the drain.
Rent Money Wasted,
As of Late 2014:
$144,000 in 2011 -
The next council
meeting about the cameras was Aug. 19, 2014.
report prepared for that meeting revealed that
75% of all tickets go to visitors.
They got an 8%
discount, to $17,700 per month for all four cameras,
thus reducing the overpayment of rent to $68,400 during
the year (when compared to a $3000 target price).
2017: Changing Vendors?
Slowly ! (More Money Wasted)
report prepared for the May 19, 2015 council
meeting recommended an approximate six-month extension
to give the police extra time so that the contract to
operate the cameras - which was due to expire
in Aug. 2015 - could be put out to bid. The
council voted 4 - 1 (Mott: nay) to authorize the
city manager to extend the contract on a month-to-month
The deadline for
the competing cameras companies to submit their bids was
Dec. 30, 2015, so in Jan. or Feb. 2016 there should have
been a city council discussion of the bids.
Instead, in Aug. 2016 the City extended
the old contract to Feb. 2017 as they apparently still
were thinking about which bid to
accept - if any.
Late 2016 invoices
show that the City still is paying RedFlex $17,700 per
month. So, by Feb. 2017 the City will have
overpaid by at least another $102,600, for a new total
of $508,590. Or maybe even more than that; as of
Apr. 2016 the cameras were seven years old, so it could
be argued that the new target rent from then to Feb.
2017 should be $2000 per camera (using the prices Elk
Grove negotiated - see FAQ # 17). That adjustment
would add $44,000 to the amount wasted, for a new total
At its meeting of
Jan. 17th the Napa City Council voted 4 - 1 (nay:
Mar. 2011: Grand Jury
Recommends 1000 Refunds at 29/121
Oct. 2011: City Asks for
500 Dismissals Because of Illegal Contract
On May 13, 2010 CalTrans
lengthened the yellow at the Hwy. 29/121
intersection, from 3.2 seconds, up to 3.8.
Despite the longer yellow,
a record 940 right turn tickets were issued there
In its June 2011 response
to the Mar. 2011 Grand Jury report, the City revealed
that in Oct. 2010, and then again in Dec. 2010, it had
effectively lengthened the yellow for rolling rights at
Hwy 29/Hwy121. The June 2011 response said:
"In October 2010 and later in December,
2010, the City began issuing citations
In that same response, it said it would
not make the refunds recommended by the Grand
Overall, the City rejected 6-1/2 of the 8 recommendations made by the Grand Jury.
If you would like to read some grand jury reports from other counties, about their red light cameras, see the Grand Jury entry in the Site Index.
Dec. 2015 Refunds
Napa was four months late providing the
longer yellows required by a recent CalTrans rule change
(see Set # 2 on the Home page), and that delay caused
the unwarranted issuance of red light camera tickets to
The City disclosed that of the tickets
issued between Aug. 1 and Dec. 2, it asked the court to
refund 196 that had already been paid at the time the
too-short yellow was discovered. The City also
asked the court to dismiss the tickets that had not yet
At an intersection at which there is an automated
enforcement system in operation, the minimum
For purposes of subdivision (a), the minimum yellow light
change intervals relating to
Napa Docs Set # 5
Napa Docs Set # 6
"The cameras are serving
the intended purpose of reducing collisions."
The presentation also
included several police-produced tables with
headings suggesting that there was a reduction in
accidents attributable to the installation of the
An examination of the those
tables (below) shows that the police's own
statistics do not support their claims.
highwayrobbery.net: Examination of Attachment
3 reveals that if you compare 2010 to 2008 (2008
being the last full year before cameras were
installed and 2010 being the only full year with
cameras), collisions went up at three of the
four intersections having cameras, and injuries went
up at two and down at two. Attachment
3 does show a big drop in collisions at
three of the four intersections, but it occurred in
2008, before cameras were installed, so
cannot be attributed to the cameras.
highwayrobbery.net: Attachment 4, which
covers the other intersections originally
considered for cameras, shows that the big drop is
between 2007 and 2008, before cameras were
installed, just like Attachment 3 shows for the
intersections where cameras were eventually
highwayrobbery.net: Attachment 5 is
interesting but tells us nothing about safety, as
the quantity of violations is under direct control
of City staff and/or the camera company. With
a few keystrokes they can change the length of the
yellow light (for straight through movements) or,
for right turns, lower the Threshold (or "trigger")
Speed. From a peer-reviewed academic study:
"Another type of research flaw in some RLC studies is the use of a process measure, such as violations or traffic citations, instead of an actual safety outcome, e.g., crashes or injuries. Unlike crashes, citations are 'endogenous,' meaning officials responsible for issuing citations directly control the number issued."
In June 2011, the
department prepared two tables for the city council
meeting of June 21. One of the new tables was an
attachment to Agenda Item 28A, the City's (required)
response to March's Grand Jury report. The other
new table was an attachment to Agenda Item 28B, a City
staff report recommending that the program be
continued. Two new columns have been added to the
big Ticket Count table (Docs Set # 1, above on this web
page), in order to display figures from the City's new
tables alongside figures from the RedFlex-generated
tables we obtained in 2010.
Napa Docs Set #
On Mar. 19, 2013 a Register
article disclosed that as much as 76% of the
City's camera tickets go to visitors, and that at the
one intersection where the minority of tickets
go to visitors, injury collisions increased 50% over
five years. The
report prepared for an Aug. 2014 council meeting
reported that 75% of all camera tickets go to visitors.
On Feb. 15, 2011 the Napa Valley Register
printed a letter from a visitor from Oklahoma, who
complained about getting a ticket for a rolling
right while she and her husband were in Napa
celebrating his retirement. She wrote:
The cold-heartedness doesn't seems to be
confined to the camera robots and the Napa
police. Consider some of the responses her
Dec. 13, 2011 the Register had a letter from a tourist
from Las Vegas, who had brought a party of twenty
people to Napa. He noted:
of the responses from the locals:
See also the Current Highlights, just
below the Ticket Counts Table.
Napa Docs Set # 9
Napa Docs Set #