BILL ANALYSIS                                                                                                                                                                                                    





                             SENATE JUDICIARY COMMITTEE
                         Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson, Chair
                             2015-2016  Regular  Session


          SB 1051 (Hancock)
          Version: April 6, 2016
          Hearing Date: May 3, 2016
          Fiscal: No
          Urgency: No
          TH   


                                        SUBJECT
                                           
                 Vehicles: Parking Enforcement: Video Image Evidence

                                      DESCRIPTION 

          Existing law authorizes the City and County of San Francisco to  
          install automated forward-facing parking control devices on  
          city-owned public transit vehicles for the purpose of video  
          imaging parking violations occurring in transit-only traffic  
          lanes.

          This bill would extend this authority to the Alameda-Contra  
          Costa Transit District, and would expand the authority to  
          include the video imaging of parking violations occurring at bus  
          stops.

                                      BACKGROUND  

          While some counties may have installed automated traffic  
          enforcement systems at an earlier date, legislative  
          authorization for automated enforcement procedures relating to  
          traffic violations began in 1994 with SB 1802 (Rosenthal, Ch.  
          1216, Stats. 1994).  That bill authorized the use of "automated  
          rail crossing enforcement systems" to enforce prohibitions on  
          drivers from passing around or under rail crossings while the  
          gates are closed.  (Veh. Code Sec. 22451.)  Those systems  
          functioned by photographing the front license plate and the  
          driver of vehicles who proceeded around closed rail crossing  
          gates in violation of the Vehicle Code provisions.  The drivers  
          of photographed vehicles, in turn, received citations for their  
          violations.








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          In 1995, the Legislature authorized a three-year trial red light  
          camera enforcement system program.  (SB 833, Kopp, Ch. 922,  
          Stats. 1995.)  Using similar technology, that program used  
          sensors connected to cameras to take photographs of the front  
          license plate and driver upon entering an intersection on a red  
          light.  That program was permanently extended in 1998 by SB 1136  
          (Kopp, Ch. 54, Stats. 1998).

          In 2007, the Legislature authorized a four-year pilot project  
          where the City and County of San Francisco (San Francisco) was  
          authorized to install video cameras on city-owned public transit  
          vehicles for the purpose of video imaging parking violations  
          occurring in transit-only traffic lanes.  (AB 101, Ma, Ch. 377,  
          Stats. 2007.)  Three years later, the Legislature authorized a  
          five-year statewide pilot project to allow local public agencies  
          to use automated parking enforcement systems for street  
          sweeping-related violations. (AB 2567, Bradford, Ch. 471, Stats.  
          2010.)  In 2011, the legislature extended San Francisco's  
          automated transit-only lane enforcement program for an  
          additional year, and required the City and County to provide a  
          report to the Transportation and Judiciary Committees of the  
          Legislature no later than March 1, 2015, describing the  
          effectiveness of the pilot program and its impact on privacy.   
          (AB 1041, Ma, Ch. 325, Stats. 2011.)  Following the receipt of  
          that report, San Francisco's transit-only lane enforcement  
          program was permanently extended in AB 1287 (Chiu, Ch. 485,  
          Stats. 2015).

          This bill would authorize the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit  
          District to operate an automated transit-only lane enforcement  
          program similar to San Francisco's, and would expand both  
          programs to include automated enforcement of parking violations  
          occurring at bus stops.

                                CHANGES TO EXISTING LAW
           
           Existing law  authorizes the use of an automated enforcement  
          system for enforcement of red light violations by a governmental  
          agency, subject to specific requirements and limitations.  (Veh.  
          Code Sec. 21455.5.)  Existing law provides that a violation of  
          any regulation governing the standing or parking of a vehicle  
          under the Vehicle Code, federal statute or regulation, or local  
          ordinance, is subject to a civil penalty.  (Veh. Code Sec.  
          40200.)







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           Existing law  provides that notice of a parking violation must  
          contain certain information, including information stating that  
          unless the parking penalty is paid or contested within 21  
          calendar days from the issuance of a citation, or 14 calendar  
          days from the mailing of the violation, as specified, the  
          renewal of the vehicle registration shall be contingent upon  
          compliance with the notice.  (Veh. Code Sec. 40207.)

           Existing law  authorizes the City and County of San Francisco  
          (San Francisco) to install automated forward facing parking  
          control devices on city-owned public transit vehicles for the  
          purpose of video imaging parking violations occurring in  
          transit-only traffic lanes.  Existing law defines a  
          "transit-only traffic lane" to mean any designated transit-only  
          lane on which use is restricted to mass transit vehicles, or  
          other designated vehicles including taxis and vanpools, during  
          posted times.  (Veh. Code Sec. 40240(a), (h).)

           Existing law  states that citations shall only be issued for  
          violations captured during the posted hours of operation for a  
          transit-only traffic lane.  Existing law requires designated  
          employees to review video image recordings for the purpose of  
          determining whether a parking violation occurred in a  
          transit-only traffic lane, and permits alleged violators to  
          review the video image evidence of the alleged violation during  
          normal business hours at no cost.  (Veh. Code Sec. 40240(a),  
          (c), (d).)

           Existing law  requires automated forward facing parking control  
          devices to be angled and focused so as to capture video images  
          of parking violations and not unnecessarily capture identifying  
          images of other drivers, vehicles, and pedestrians.  Existing  
          law requires the devices to record the date and time of the  
          violation at the same time video images are captured, and  
          provides that video image records are confidential and shall not  
          be used or accessed for any purposes not related to the  
          enforcement of parking violations occurring in transit-only  
          traffic lanes.  (Veh. Code Sec. 40240(a), (f).)

           Existing law  authorizes the retention of video image evidence  
          obtained from an automated forward facing parking control device  
          for up to six months from the date the information was obtained,  
          or 60 days after final disposition of the citation, whichever  
          date is later, and provides that after such time the information  







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          shall be destroyed. Existing law requires video image evidence  
          from forward facing automated enforcement devices that does not  
          contain evidence of a parking violation occurring in a  
          transit-only traffic lane to be destroyed within 15 days after  
          the information was first obtained.  (Veh. Code Sec. 40240(e).)

           Existing law  states that prior to issuing notices of parking  
          violations pursuant to this authority, San Francisco shall  
          commence a program to issue only warning notices for 30 days,  
          and shall also make a public announcement of the program at  
          least 30 days prior to commencement of issuing notices of  
          parking violations.  (Veh. Code Sec. 40240(b).)

           This bill  would authorize the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit  
          District to install automated forward facing parking control  
          devices on district-owned public transit vehicles for the  
          purpose of video imaging parking violations occurring in  
          transit-only traffic lanes under the same terms and conditions  
          that govern San Francisco's automated enforcement program.

           This bill  would expand the automated transit-only lane  
          enforcement program authorized for both San Francisco and the  
          Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District to include the video  
          imaging of parking violations occurring at bus stops.

           This bill  would define "bus stop" to mean a curb space  
          authorized for the loading and unloading of passengers of a bus  
          engaged as a common carrier in local transportation when  
          indicated by a sign or red paint on the curb erected or painted  
          by local authorities pursuant to an ordinance.

                                        COMMENT
           
           1.Stated need for the bill
            
           According to the author:
            SB 1051 adds [the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District (AC  
            Transit)] to existing law that authorizes the use of forward  
            facing cameras to issue citations for vehicles illegally  
            stopped in a bus-only lane or at a transit bus stop.  Blocking  
            access to bus stops is a growing problem, and it raises  
            significant safety issues for passengers boarding or exiting  
            the bus if the bus cannot pull up to the curb.  This is a  
            particularly acute safety and access issue for those  
            individuals who have disabilities or need extra assistance  







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            with the boarding process, like children or the elderly.   
            Furthermore, there is resulting congestion if the bus cannot  
            pull out of the traffic lane when an illegally parked vehicle  
            prevents access to the bus stop.

            AC Transit is currently building a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT)  
            corridor that will utilize dedicated bus-only lanes.  This BRT  
            project will provide fast, frequent and reliable transit  
            service between 20th Street in downtown Oakland and the San  
            Leandro BART station.  The buses will travel in a dedicated  
            bus-only lane for most of the corridor, similar to rail  
            service.  This will improve service reliability and frequency,  
            with 5-minute headways during peak times.  Emergency vehicles  
            may also use the BRT lane, which can improve emergency  
            response times.  The corridor primarily runs along  
            International Boulevard and E. 14th Street.  Service will  
            begin in late 2017.  Given the issues experienced in San  
            Francisco with vehicles illegally stopped in bus-only lanes,  
            AC Transit is sponsoring SB 1051 in order to have this  
            authority in place before service begins.

           2.Right to Privacy
            
           The California Constitution provides that all people have  
          inalienable rights, including the right to pursue and obtain  
          privacy.  (Cal. Const., art. I, Sec. 1.)  This "right of privacy  
          is vitally important.  It derives, in this state, not only from  
          the protections against unreasonable searches and seizures  
          guaranteed by the Fourth Amendment and article I, section 13,  
          but also from article I, section 1, of our State Constitution.   
          Homage to personhood is the foundation for individual rights  
          protected by our state and national Constitutions."  (In re  
          William G. (1985) 40 Cal.3d 550, 563.)

          This Committee has previously expressed concern about the  
          privacy implications of equipping large numbers of transit  
          vehicles with forward-facing video cameras that record not only  
          other vehicles, but also individuals on sidewalks and commercial  
          and residential property adjacent to the roadway.  When San  
          Francisco's automated transit-only lane enforcement (TOLE) pilot  
          program was reauthorized by AB 1041 (Ma, Ch. 325, Stats. 2011),  
          the Legislature directed San Francisco to evaluate the privacy  
          impacts of the program as part of a larger report on the TOLE  
          program.  That report was submitted in March 2015 and stated in  
          relevant part:







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            The TOLE images and recordings are dedicated to the TOLE  
            program and can only be used for the TOLE program.  The images  
            and footage are not used for general surveillance.  Video for  
            the TOLE program is recorded onto a special, dedicated hard  
            drive for professional parking control officers to review for  
            violations.  After reviewing footage, hard drives are  
            installed back onto Muni buses where they are overwritten with  
            new data.  Each hard drive can hold approximately 72 hours of  
            video footage.  There have been no recorded privacy complaints  
            related to the TOLE program since the program began.

          The Committee's analysis of that report, in the context of AB  
          1287 (Chiu, Ch. 485, Stats. 2015) which extended San Francisco's  
          TOLE program indefinitely, noted:

            The lack of privacy-related complaints concerning this program  
            may be attributable to specific requirements built in to the  
            statute authorizing San Francisco's automation of transit-only  
            lane parking enforcement.  Pursuant to this statute, San  
            Francisco's automated forward facing parking control devices  
            must be angled and focused so as to capture video images of  
            parking violations and not unnecessarily capture identifying  
            images of other drivers, vehicles, and pedestrians.  Existing  
            law specifies that these video records are confidential and  
            may not be used or accessed for any purposes not related to  
            the enforcement of parking violations occurring in  
            transit-only traffic lanes.  Video recordings collected by the  
            automated enforcement system must be destroyed no later than  
            six months after the date of collection, or 60 days after the  
            final disposition of a citation issued on the basis of a  
            recorded image, whichever is later.  Video recordings not  
            containing evidence of a parking violation in a transit-only  
            traffic lane must be destroyed within 15 days after  
            collection.

            Together, these statutory restrictions and the experience  
            gained through the pilot program suggest that this automated  
            enforcement program is not having a negative impact on  
            Californian's fundamental right to privacy.  However, . . . it  
            is unclear whether the proposed expansion of transit-only  
            corridors to other areas of the city over the next ten years  
            will have a negative impact on privacy interests, particularly  
            if this expansion reaches into residential districts or other  
            areas where individuals have a heightened expectation of  







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            privacy.

          Importantly, the Committee's analysis stated that "statutory  
          restrictions and the experience gained through the pilot  
          program" suggest that the program was not having a negative  
          impact on the right to privacy, but the analysis reserved  
          judgment as to whether the expansion of the program into other  
          areas would negatively impact this fundamental right.

          AC Transit's automated transit-lane only enforcement program is  
          currently in the proposal stage.  As such, no assessment of the  
          proposed program's privacy impacts is available for review, and  
          the Committee has no directly related body of experience to draw  
          from regarding how the program will perform in these new  
          communities.  Consequently, the Committee should consider  
          whether an analysis of the program's impact on privacy ought to  
          be required before AC Transit's automated enforcement program is  
          permanently authorized.

             Suggested Amendment  :

            If the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District implements an  
            automated enforcement system to enforce violations occurring  
            in transit-only traffic lanes, as specified, the District  
            shall provide to the transportation and judiciary committees  
            of the Legislature an evaluation of the enforcement system's  
            effectiveness and impact on privacy in compliance with Section  
            9795 of the Government Code, no later than January 1, 2021.

            The authority for the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District to  
            implement an automated enforcement system to enforce  
            violations occurring in transit-only traffic lanes shall  
            remain in effect only until January 1, 2022, and as of that  
            date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is  
            enacted before January 1, 2022, deletes or extends that date.

           3.Revenue Generation
           
          This Committee has also previously expressed concern over the  
          use of automated traffic enforcement programs not as means to  
          promote roadway safety, but as a mechanism for revenue  
          generation.  The Committee's analysis of AB 101 (Ma, Ch. 377,  
          Stats. 2007), which created San Francisco's automated  
          transit-only lane enforcement program noted:








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            While previously allowing citations based upon photographic  
            evidence for dangerous rail crossings and red light violations  
            appeared to be mainly supported by the lives that would be  
            saved by increased enforcement, and deterrence of reckless  
            conduct, parking violations do not rise to that level.
            . . . Thus, the program proposed by this bill represents a  
            fundamental shift in the justification required in order to  
            implement an automatic enforcement system.  If cost savings  
            are considered sufficient justification for such automation,  
            many additional types of violations could be modified pursuant  
            to the precedent set by [AB 101].

          Similarly, the Committee's analysis of AB 2567 (Bradford, Ch.  
          471, Stats. 2010), which authorized local public agencies to  
          install and operate automated parking enforcement systems on  
          street sweepers, noted:

            [AB 2567] would rely upon the precedent set by AB 101 (Ma,  
            2007) to allow street sweepers throughout the state to capture  
            digital photographs for purposes of issuing parking citations.  
             That precedent - authorizing the use of cameras to save on  
            costs - represents a fundamental change in how California has  
            historically used cameras to enforce violations.  This  
            legislation represents another step away from the rationale  
            previously used to justify the use of cameras for automated  
            enforcement.  Although this bill could arguably result in  
            reduced employee costs for local governments (and increased  
            revenue from citations), part of that cost reduction could  
            also come in the form of fewer employees needed to patrol for  
            those violations.

          In response to the concern that these automated enforcement  
          programs could be used more for revenue generation than for  
          roadway safety, the reauthorization of San Francisco's automated  
          enforcement program in 2011 included a requirement that San  
          Francisco prepare a report for the Legislature evaluating the  
          effectiveness of the program, including an analysis of the  
          program's implementation costs against its revenue generation.   
          That report was submitted in March of 2015 and showed that San  
          Francisco's automated enforcement program for transit-only lanes  
          at the time operated at a sustained loss.  No such study has  
          been conducted regarding AC Transit's proposed automated  
          enforcement program.  Consequently, the Committee should  
          consider whether a similar cost/revenue analysis ought to be  
          required before AC Transit's automated enforcement program is  







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          permanently authorized.

             Suggested Amendment  :

            If the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District implements an  
            automated enforcement system to enforce violations occurring  
            in transit-only traffic lanes, as specified, the District  
            shall provide to the transportation and judiciary committees  
            of the Legislature an evaluation of the enforcement system's  
            effectiveness, cost to implement, and generation of revenue,  
            in compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, no  
            later than January 1, 2021.

            The authority for the Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District to  
            implement an automated enforcement system to enforce  
            violations occurring in transit-only traffic lanes shall  
            remain in effect only until January 1, 2022, and as of that  
            date is repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is  
            enacted before January 1, 2022, deletes or extends that date.

          4.Expansion to bus stops
           
          Unlike previous automated transit-only lane enforcement  
          programs, this bill would expand automated enforcement to  
          parking violations occurring at bus stops.  Such a change  
          represents a significant expansion to automated transit vehicle  
          enforcement authority, and raises new concerns not previously  
          evaluated by this Committee or the Legislature.  Depending on  
          how authorized entities administer this new power, it could lead  
          to an unreasonable or inflexible mode of enforcement that would  
          not necessarily be the case with enforcement by traffic officers  
          present to witness a violation. 

          Videographic evidence necessarily limits the field of view of an  
          observer, and prevents consideration of relevant facts that  
          would otherwise be available to an officer who sees an event  
          transpire in person.  Will a transit vehicle's camera system be  
          able to clearly distinguish between a vehicle slowing to park  
          adjacent to a bus stop versus a vehicle parked in a designated  
          bus stop?  Would the angle of a transit vehicle's camera obscure  
          critical facts that explain a would-be violator's actions, such  
          as the presence of a small child in a vehicle's path of travel,  
          or a disabled vehicle obstructing the normal flow of traffic?   
          The Committee may wish to consider whether expanding transit  
          vehicle based automated enforcement to bus stops ought to be  







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          implemented on a trial basis or through a time-limited pilot  
          program.

             Suggested Amendment  :

            If the City and County of San Francisco or the Alameda-Contra  
            Costa Transit District implements an automated enforcement  
            system to enforce parking violations occurring in bus stops,  
            as specified, the implementing agency shall provide to the  
            transportation and judiciary committees of the Legislature an  
            evaluation of the enforcement system's effectiveness, impact  
            on privacy, cost to implement, and generation of revenue, in  
            compliance with Section 9795 of the Government Code, no later  
            than January 1, 2021.

            The authority to implement an automated enforcement system to  
            enforce parking violations occurring in bus stops shall remain  
            in effect only until January 1, 2022, and as of that date is  
            repealed, unless a later enacted statute, that is enacted  
            before January 1, 2022, deletes or extends that date.


           Support  :  California Public Parking Association

           Opposition  :  None Known

                                        HISTORY
           
           Source  :  Alameda-Contra Costa Transit District

           Related Pending Legislation  :  None Known

           Prior Legislation  :

          AB 1287 (Chiu, Ch. 485, Stats. 2015) See Background.

          AB 1041 (Ma, Ch. 325, Stats. 2011) See Background.

          AB 2567 (Bradford, Ch. 471, Stats. 2010) See Background.

          AB 101 (Ma, Ch. 377, Stats. 2007) See Background.

          SB 1136 (Kopp, Ch. 54, Stats. 1998) See Background.

          SB 833 (Kopp, Ch. 922, Stats. 1995) See Background.







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          SB 1802 (Rosenthal, Ch. 1216, Stats. 1994) See Background.

           Prior Vote  :  Senate Transportation and Housing Committee (Ayes  
                                           11, Noes 0)

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