RED LIGHT CAMERAS
you haven't already done so, please read the West
Hollywood section on the Camera Towns page
West Hollywood Documents
you get a right turn ticket in WeHo? If so, see
Ticketing Highlights, below.
In June 2018, Vote No on Sheila Kuehl
Do you live in LA County? Was Zev
Yaroslavsky your County Supervisor? (Until Nov.
2014, he represented the Third District, which includes
the central and western San Fernando Valley, Malibu,
Santa Monica, Venice, Beverly Hills, the City of West
Hollywood, and part of Hollywood.)
Zev "termed out," and in the Nov. 2014
election, Sheila Kuehl won the race to succeed him, by a
Sheila "Kuehl Cams" Kuehl, in 2007
During her career in the California
Legislature, Kuehl made three attempts to pass bills to allow
the use of automated speed enforcement (photo radar) in
As an LA County Supervisor, she
has a seat on the MTA/Metro board and she will be a vote
to continue and expand Metro's huge (101 cameras, so
far) red light camera system.
In 2016 she voted to put an additional LA County-wide sales tax, to go to Metro, on the Nov. 2016 ballot - and it passed. (See Measure M on the Action/Legis page, for more about that tax.)
Kuehl will be up for re-election on June 5, 2018 and Nov. 2022.
Local Attractions Near West
Restaurants: Ago, Cecconi's, The
Church Key, Comme Ca, Connie and Ted's, Eveleigh, Gorge,
Gracias Madre, Ink, Lucques, Madeo Ristorante, Night
Market, Nishimura, RivaBella, Salt's Cure, in or near
The Grove (AOC, Angelini Osteria, Animal, Cook's County,
Crossroads, The Hart and the Hunter, JAR, Petty Cash
Taqueria, Son of a Gun)
Hotels: Avalon, Hotel Bel Air,
The Beverly Hills Hotel, Beverly Wilshire, Chamberlain
West Hollywood, Four Seasons, L'Ermitage, Hollywood
Roosevelt, Hotel Wilshire, Le Montrose, London West
Hollywood, Loews Hollywood, Mondrian, Montage, Mr. C, Mosaic,
Palihouse West, Peninsula, Petit Ermitage,
Redbury, SLS Hotel, Sirtaj, Sofitel, Sunset Marquis,
Other: Cedars Sinai Medical
Center, CBS Television City, the Melrose District, in or
near The Grove (Nordstrom, Barneys of New York), the
Map of West Hollywood's
Cameras (Red Dots)
West Hollywood Chamber of Commerce
June 2017: Right Turn
Enforcement Has Been Added - See Ticketing Highlights,
Table: New 10-4-04,
Citations Issued, and Money Received
This table made by highwayrobbery.net, using these official reports:
Ticket counts, 2005 - Aug. 2011, monthly, by location
Ticket counts, 2005 - Aug. 2011, monthly, by location (snp file - for number crunchers)
Ticket counts, 2011, monthly, by location
Ticket counts, 2011, monthly, by location (snp)
Ticket counts, 2011, monthly, by location, and citywide, detailed (tif files):
Group 1, citywide and locations 3103 - 3113
Group 2, locations 3121 - 3132
Group 3, locations 3133 - 3151
Group 4, locations 3152 - 3164
Ticket counts, 1999 - 2011, monthly, citywide totals
Ticket counts, 1999 - 2011, monthly, citywide totals (snp file)
Performance Report: Total events, potential violations, tickets mailed, 1999 - Aug. 2011, monthly citywide totals
Performance Report: Total events, potential violations, tickets mailed, 1999 - Dec. 2011, monthly citywide totals
Ticket counts, 2012, monthly, by location, and Performance Report to Dec. 2012
Ticket counts, 2012 totals by location
Ticket counts, to Jan. 2013, monthly, and annual 1999-2012, by location
Ticket counts, monthly report for Feb. 2013
Ticket counts, monthly report for Mar. 2013
Ticket counts, monthly report for Dec. 2013
Ticket counts, to May 2014, monthly, and annual 1999-2013, by location
Ticket counts, monthly report for May 2014
Ticket counts, monthly report for Sept. 2014
Ticket counts, monthly report for Dec. 2014 (8)
Ticket counts, monthly reports for early 2015 (8)
Ticket counts, monthly reports to Apr. 2015
Ticket counts, monthly report for May 2015
Ticket counts, monthly reports for July & Aug. 2015
Ticket counts, City's figures for June - Aug. 2017 (12)
Ticket counts, Gatso's reports for June - Aug. 2017 (13)
( ) indicates a footnote.
(1) Totals are as provided by the City.
(2) These annual totals, or annual projections, are by highwayrobbery.net.
(3) From the Dec. 2011, Dec. 2012 and Dec. 2013 reports, above.
(4) Monthly average for the year indicated.
(5) For the Xerox system (1999 to 2015), the figures in red type are "raw" violations recorded by the cameras, and may have been posted only for selected months or locations, due to time limitations. The figures in black type are citations issued. For Gatso system, see footnotes 12 and 13, below.
(7) The extra-wide vertical grid lines are for the convenience of the reader - they have no other purpose.
(8) On page 3 of the report for Dec. 2014 the lower ticketing during Nov. and Dec. was attributed to various construction projects. The report for Mar. 2015 said: "All of the locations that were down due to loop issues are once again in service." Also see Set # 9, below.
(9) In late 2015 the cameras at the locations marked "X" were shut down - but maybe not permanently. See Set # 6, below.
(10) The citywide total for June 2015 was calculated by subtracting the Jan. - May. totals (found in the monthly reports generated by Xerox, and shown in the table above) from the six-month total given in Appendix 1D of the sheriff's semiannual report to the city council.
The citywide total for Sep. 2015 was calculated by subtracting the July - Aug. totals (found in the Xerox reports) from the total given in the sheriff's semiannual report.
(11) Apr. 11, 2017 was the planned official start up date for the new Gatso cameras marked "G" above, but they started on June 11. See Ticketing Highlights, below.
(12) On 10-23-17 the City provided monthly grand totals it created for the first three months of operation of the Gatso system, beginning on June 11, but no camera-by-camera breakout. The figures in red type are "raw" violations recorded by the cameras, the figures in black type are straight through citations issued and the figures in blue type are rolling right citations issued.
(13) On 10-24-17 the City provided more monthly reports by Gatso, including a camera-by-camera breakout. The City explained:
"The number of citations will be increased [compared to the figures they sent the previous day, 10-23-17] because Gatso factors in transfers of liability and changes of address as a new citation. The numbers that I gave you in the prior emails [on 10-23-17] are the actual number of citations issued."(14) For more info about monthly revenue, see Set # 7, below.
Beginning in June 2017: Right Turn Enforcement, Supposedly with Tight Guidelines
In a Mar. 15, 2017 article the Beverly Press reported that according to a City transportation engineering technician, "as of now, rolling right turns will not face penalties." However, in a May 8, 2017 article (archived copy) wehoville.com reported that the sheriff was proposing to enforce on right turns, and then the question was put on the agenda of the June 5 city council meeting.
May 24 WeHoVille Article (Archived Copy)
June 1 WeHoVille Article (Archived Copy)
Staff Report for June 5 Council Meeting Attachment
The council approved right turn enforcement by a vote of 4 - 1.
Minutes of June 5 Council Meeting
The following day the City Engineer emailed Gatso and listed the situations in which a right turn ticket would be issued. From that email:
"Some of the City Council members were hesitant about implementing the change. However,
after much discussion, the City Council authorized moving forward with issuance of
citations for non-stopping right turns on red only for situations where the Los Angeles
County Sheriff's Department identifies a public safety concern. Based on information
presented by Deputy Miles at the meeting, situations where there is a public safety concern
include but may not be limited to a motorist making a non-stopping turn in the presence of
pedestrians; the motorist making a non-stopping turn causing a conflict with a vehicle that
is legally in the intersection; and a motorist making a non-stopping turn with some other
safety condition (i.e. crossing over several lanes of traffic). These incidents with the
public safety concerns should not involve violations with vehicle speeds under 10 mph."
(Underlining added by highwayrobbery.net)
If you receive a right turn ticket from West Hollywood and the photos don't show one of the situations underlined above, please contact me.
West Hollywood Docs Set # 2
Sample WeHo Ticket - and a Special Kind: Gridlock
During a visit to the courthouse, I talked to a lot of defendants and many of them showed me their tickets.
The first thing I noticed was that you can't read the numbers on the tickets that WeHo mails to defendants. The very critical tenths digit is a smaller font size, so no one could tell for sure how late they were after the red, or how long the yellow was. The tenths digits were not legible on any ticket I saw - and we looked at them in good sunlight, with as many as two pairs of reading glasses at once! A sample ticket posted by the West Hollywood sheriff illustrates the illegibility.
Did you get a gridlock ticket (CVC 22526) in the mail, complete with photos of your car? Read this thread: Gridlock Ticket on ExpertLaw.com
West Hollywood Docs Set # 3
I attended the June 19, 2003 trial session for West Hollywood tickets, and purchased a copy of the official tape of that session ($10.00).
The first part of the tape has now been transcribed, and is available here: WeHo Trial Transcript .
It is a good way to find out how an actual trial goes.
West Hollywood Docs Set # 4
WeHo's Business Rules (Guidelines?)
Vehicle Code Section 21455.5 requires that a city shall develop "uniform guidelines for screening and issuing violations." We have obtained a copy of WeHo's "Business Rules for the Red Light Camera System," which appears to that sort of document. However, 21455.5(d) says that the development of the guidelines may not be contracted out to the supplier of the cameras, and the language of WeHo's Business Rules is full of indications that it was written by the supplier. (See Defect # 10.)
West Hollywood Docs Set # 5
The City provided Late Times, etcetera, for all 24 cameras.
Late Times, beginning of program to Oct. 2011, ranked by frequency:
Snp file (for number crunchers)
Late Times, by location:
Snp file (for number crunchers)
West Hollywood Docs Set # 6
The Contract - Paying Too Much - and Fewer Cameras in Early 2017
1999 Contract & RFP Memo
2010 Amendment (five year extension)
In the 2010 contract, the City agreed to pay WAY too much rent - approx. $2597 per camera per month. For example: In March 2014 the City of Elk Grove, California approved a new contract which specified the following schedule of rents for their five cameras.
Under the 2010 - 2015 contract, WeHo paid 73%
too much (compared to the Elk Grove price schedule,
before any adjustment for economies of scale - the
contract was for 18 cameras) over the five years of the
extension, $1,184,616 extra. To cover that extra
rent, WeHo needed to issue an extra 15,188 tickets (the
City's fine revenue averaged $78 for each ticket it
issued, in 2013).
For more info about how much cities pay for their cameras, see FAQ # 17.
2015: New Contract, New Vendor, Same Total Rent for Fewer Cameras
The contract was to expire in June 2015, so at their Mar. 2, 2015 meeting the city council considered a staff recommendation to put the operation of the program out for bid.
The Mar. 2 staff report promised an evaluation of the program, but only after the signing of the new contract.
The council (with one member absent and one seat vacant) adopted the staff recommendation, 3 - 0, without any discussion other than Mayor D'Amico saying, "I would like to note my 'no' vote."
A new staff report presented at the Sept. 21 council meeting recommended accepting a bid from Gatso USA (a Massachusetts company with no other customers in California) for the operation of eight cameras at $4943 each per month, for five years, with the ability to cancel without penalty after three years. The staff report promised a short changeover period:
"Because this equipment is wireless, construction work is minimized, enabling deployment and start of the program for West Hollywood in less than three months from the start of the
contract." (Page 4 of staff report)
SaferStreetsLA submitted a detailed report suggesting that the program be discontinued.
The council voted 3 -2 (ayes: Duran, Horvath, Heilman) to accept the staff recommendation. The council was given no information about the bid by the incumbent vendor, Xerox/ACS - how much they bid, what equipment updates they may have offered. (In 2014 Beverly Hills chose them as their new vendor.) There was no bid from ATS, the largest camera company in the US.
The City agreed to pay Gatso nearly twice as much rent, per camera, as it had been paying Xerox/ACS. That monthly rent will set a quota - to break even the city will need to issue more tickets per camera.
During the five years the City will need to issue 25,000 tickets just to cover the rent owed Gatso, plus another 10,000 tickets to cover the cost of staff (equaling 583 tickets a month). Those tickets will bear $17.5 million in fines.
Under the Gatso contract (signed copy, including brochure) the number of cameras dropped from 18 to eight. Initially, Gatso's cameras are to monitor the eight approaches marked "G" in Set # 1 above, but they may end up at other locations, including the former locations marked "X," because the new contract (paragraph D7 in Exh. A) allows the City to move each camera once, without charge, during the five-year term.
The Sept. 21, 2015 staff report provided no detail about the most important part of a camera program: Is it saving lives? The six page staff report had just two generalized statements about safety. It said (on page two, middle), "The City has been successful in reducing accidents and violations throughout the 16 years of program operation." And, at the bottom of that same page it said, "Parameters studied included... 5-year accident history (both broadside and rear-end collisions), severity of injuries related to collisions, traffic volumes, and vehicle speeds."
That's all the staff report said about safety. No camera-by-camera or year-by-year statistics from 16 years of operation during which the City issued 215,440 tickets bearing $100 million in fines. No breakdown of accidents by type (broadside, rear-end), severity, or whether they were actually caused by red light running - or something else.
The new contract contains no provision for the issuance of Snitch Tickets, the investigatory "Courtesy Notice" forms recognized in SB 1303 of 2012. Absent access to the Snitch Ticket tool, the City will have just two poor choices when there's an obvious mismatch between the pictured driver and the registered owner. 1. File charges against the registered owner, without Probable Cause. 2. Reject the violation.
Early 2017: Gatso's Cameras Started, After Long Delay
There was a long delay before Gatso's cameras began operation - caused in part by some bumbling and in part by the need to
have Edison build an electrical service for each camera. A Dec. 1, 2016 email from the City to Gatso said:
"Great news... Edison has notified the City that they will be energizing the two service pedestals on La Cienega Blvd. on December 6th. These pedestals will supply power to the two rear
cameras on La Cienega Blvd. at Melrose Avenue."
Emails about the Delay
On Mar. 9, 2017 the City announced that the cameras would begin issuing warning tickets on Mar. 13 and that real tickets would begin on Apr. 11. (In Oct. 2017 the City provided ticketing stats which showed that ticketing began on June 11. See Set # 1, above.)
WeHoVille Article (archived copy)
Right Turn Ticketing Approved
In June 2017 the City Council approved ticketing for right turns. See Ticketing Highlights, above.
When Will It End?
The five-year contract term began when the cameras began operation. A staff email said the cameras began operation in March 2017 and that the contract will expire on Feb. 28, 2022.
Section 6.1 of the contract allows the City to end the program at any time, on short notice, although for a cancellation prior to March 2020 the City would have to pay a prorated penalty to Gatso.
West Hollywood Docs Set # 7
The City's monthly ticket revenue from the court is available in the Revenue Spreadsheet on the LA County Docs page and is also noted in a column in the Set # 1 table, above.
West Hollywood Docs Set # 8
Informational Videos and Statements by the Sheriff
In 2012 the Sheriff posted some informational videos, on his website.
In 2014 WeHoVille published an interview with the sheriff.
Dep. Porche retired in 2016.
West Hollywood Docs Set # 9
Longer Yellow Lights in WeHo, and their Effect
SaferStreetsLA's Studied the Effect of the Longer Yellows in WeHo
West Hollywood Docs Set # 10
There may be some more West Hollywood information posted in the next few weeks. Mark your calendar to remind you to come back here and look!
RED LIGHT CAMERAS