Arizona Governor Vetoes Ban On Police Ticket Quotas

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has vetoed a bill that would have banned police departments from setting quotas for traffic tickets.
Though there have been reports of ticket quotas across the country, the same reports haven’t been coming out of Arizona, which Ducey mentions in his veto explanation.

“While quotas for traffic complaints don’t currently appear to be happening in Arizona law enforcement entities, none of us want to see such policies implemented,” Ducey says. Therefore, I understand the intent of House Bill 2410. However, in its current form, I worry that police chiefs and local entities will be prevented from objectively gauging performance in their departments — a concern for officers themselves, the public and overall public safety.”

This bill actually had support from police organizations. At various stages, the Arizona Police Association, Combined Law Enforcement Associations Of Arizona, and the Fraternal Order of Police were lobbying in favor of the bill.

The Arizona Association of Police Chiefs, however, was against the bill.

That organization’s lobbyist, John Thomas, testified before a Senate committee last month that it appears no police organization in the state has such a quota. He said there was one jurisdiction in southern Arizona (Tucson) that had a policy of one citation a day, but has since been changed to one traffic stop per day.

The chiefs’ real problem with the bill, Thomas explained, was that the proposal would have prevented agencies from promoting an officer based on the number of traffic citations. Thomas brought up a scenario in which two officers sought a promotion to traffic cop, but one had experience writing traffic citations, while the other didn’t.

The bill had strong support from lawmakers, with passing on a 29-0 vote in the Senate, and 48-9 vote in the House.

Yet Ducey vetoed the bill, citing that the bill may go a bit beyond a simple ban on quota systems. In Ducey’s explanation, he says he’s “open to working to find ways to ensure quotas don’t become a practice in Arizona.”

Read full explanation.

From The Phoenix New Times

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