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Posted on Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 6:04 a.m.

Ticket quota for Ypsilanti police officers is illegal, arbitrator finds

By Lee Higgins

A mandate requiring Ypsilanti police officers to write 30 tickets each month or face disciplinary action was illegally enacted in 2008, an arbitrator ruled.

The arbitrator overturned a written reprimand issued to Officer Annette Coppock, who didn't write enough tickets. The Police Officers Association of Michigan, which is the parent union for the Ypsilanti Police Officers' Association, had filed a grievance in the case.

While the quota remains in place, Officer Robert Peto, the union president, said he's pleased with the ruling. The way the quota is set up is “illegal” and it’s “clearly stated in the motor vehicle code," he said.

Ypsilanti-police.jpg

Ypsilanti police officers are required to write 30 tickets or issue 30 warnings a month.

File photo

By law, a quota must be incorporated into an officer's performance evaluation, which wasn't the case in Ypsilanti, the arbitrator found.

Pittsfield Township Public Safety Director Matt Harshberger, who implemented the quota when he was the police chief in Ypsilanti, declined to comment Thursday. Harshberger said he didn't think it was appropriate to comment because he no longer works for the city of Ypsilanti.

When Harshberger enacted the mandate, he said it was a performance evaluation system.

The quota applies to the city's more than 20 road patrol officers. It requires officers to write 30 tickets a month - which can be traffic citations, ordinance violations and warnings.

New Police Chief Amy Walker said Thursday she's aware of the ruling and planned to meet with city officials to discuss it. She said the mandate remains in place, but no officers have been written up in recent months.

April McGrath, the city's director of administrative services, could not be reached for comment Thursday.

According to the arbitrator's decision, Harshberger implemented the quota after the number of tickets being issued in Ypsilanti dropped from 300 to 100 each month. The number fell after Harshberger mandated that officers show up to court when people were contesting tickets, documents show.

Word had gotten out officers weren't showing up, so people were fighting tickets, which was backing up the court docket, documents say. Harshberger testified the drop in the number of tickets "became a major concern" and "impacted public safety."

Coppock, a 15-year veteran, didn’t write 30 tickets in March 2009, documents show. As a result, she received a written reprimand and was charged with misconduct, insubordination, neglect of duty and unsatisfactory performance. She had already received a warning for not meeting the quota in October 2008.

According to documents, Coppock testified she planned to meet the quota in March, but was 18 tickets shy on her last day of work that month. She was working on an evidence report, which was somehow lost in her computer, documents show.

Coppock was "tied up in an embezzlement investigation," she told Walker, who was a lieutenant at the time, documents say.

Officers are busy investigating sexual assaults, robberies, aggravated assaults and other crimes, Peto said. In some cases, he said, the quota has pulled officers away from writing up reports.

“It has a bad effect on morale," he said. "For years, we’ve always been granted discretion to do our job and it’s never been a problem and we’ve been able to accomplish quite a bit.”

Coppock wasn't the only officer written up for failing to meet the quota. Last April, at least one other officer was written up and contested the discipline. A decision in that case is expected soon, officials said.

Lee Higgins covers crime and courts for AnnArbor.com. He can be reached by phone at (734) 623-2527 and email at leehiggins@annarbor.com.

Comments

Basic Bob

Sun, Feb 7, 2010 : 10:51 a.m.

Writing less than 30 tickets in a month is so far below the average to raise the suspicion of the supervisor. Especially when this happens repeatedly. If the office is actually assigned to other duty, then the supervisor would know about it and not discipline the officer. Now if the quota is 300 per month then that looks like revenue enhancement. Ypsilanti has mostly local traffic so I can understand cutting the city residents a break. Police presence is one way to modify driving behavior, but writing tickets will really get people to drive more safely. By the way, my last speeding ticket was for 12 over in Van Buren on US-12 eastbound under the railroad underpass. I notice most traffic is 60-70 mph in front of the Willow Run plant but slows to 50-60 mph at the county line.

johnnya2

Sun, Feb 7, 2010 : 9:38 a.m.

I have no problem with police writing tickets, but it should not be tied to their promotions or evaluations. I also think the money should NOT go to the local community. If there is a financial incentive for the city and officer to issue tickets, then they are likely to become nit-picky and truly clog up the court system. Do we really want police to be issuing tickets like they are an assembly line? If the money went to driver safety improvement programs, or into systems like other states have that allow for drivers to go to a refresher class and pay for the class it will bring about the stated goal of safety. Make all people who are ticketed pay for a defensive driving coarse, and put them on probation. That way the financial incentive is taken away from the city and officer.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 7:21 p.m.

Eyehart Still not sure what you're talking about but when I mentioned hideing I was reffering to spots where there are a lot of problems or complaints.Schools are a good example. Most usally have a lot of space around them where it is easy to a patrol car thats why you hide so they don't see you.During times when students are present such as reccess and in and out times thats when you park so you can be seen.BTW youre are sortta correct about my knowledge

Lokalisierung

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 5:56 p.m.

@ Mick 52 the story does say that they do not have to be tickets but can be warnings also. Onlything i can say agianst my point is 30 is too high...should be 20...or 1 per "shift/8 hours working."

nxil2009

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 5:49 p.m.

"Sure why doesn't it sound right? Seroiusly, what's your problem with it? " Because cops aren't selling t-shirts, or cleaning your teeth or making pizzas. It is a sort of chicken and egg argument. What is driving what? Is there a need for the secretary because there are more tickets than can be handled normally, or is it the need to protect the secretary's job what is driving the need for tickets. I think it is dangerous to tie criminal justice employee's pay to the number of citizens they process. And though the bulk of the conversation here has been about quotas, the article includes specific information about what she was written up for which IMO makes it something worthy of comment. Feel free not to comment on it yourself.

Mick52

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 5:43 p.m.

Interesting comments people. I used to be a PO too. YpsiLivin has a good point, which is what I wondered when I read this. Revenue. I wish this reporter had asked about the reason, all of them. An officer buddy of mine used to work in a western Wayne county agency many years back and at that time, there was tremendous pressure on the officers to write tickets-it was a significant source of revenue: No quota, just write as many as you can. This article describes a quota. The number of tickets you write has no correlation to productivity. Every officer knows of certain spots where people roll through stop lights, don't notice the No Turn On Red signs and so on. Running up ticket numbers is easy. What is more important, writing lots of tickets (which irritates people) or getting into the businesses and getting to know the owners and into the neighborhoods and chatting with the residents? You get to know people and they trust you. And you get good information from them. Also there was a state law, perhaps it has been altered that made ticket quotas illegal. I believe that law was written by Perry Bullard who represented Ann Arbor. I would be surprised Matt Harshberger would not know this, thus perhaps it has been altered and that would explain the ruling by the arbitrator. A wise police officer who trained me gave me some sage advice. Give your local residents a break whenever possible. Not always, some people seriously need a ticket. Your department relies on them for support. Who will vote for a police millage if the police are ticket happy? I hated doing traffic, I liked to concentrate on real crimes, like this officer did when this happened to her.

Lokalisierung

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 5:27 p.m.

"#7 To be sure, quotas are also about money. In fact some court clerks/secretaries jobs are paid partially or wholly by revenue generated from tickets. Does this seem right?" Sure why doesn't it sound right? Seroiusly, what's your problem with it? Are Pizza drivers paychecks funded by the overall amount of pizzas the store delivers? of course they are. Are a dental hygenists wages paid by people getting their teeth cleaned? of course they are. A lot of jobs have performance markers and trackers they use. If someone worked on a roofing crew, wqould it be outrgous for the boss to say they needed to do X amount of Roofs per month or X amount of shingles/sq. ft. per day? What's the difference between that and what's going on here? Now the exact verbage of the write-ups are unfair i think, and perhaps look bad n their permenant record, but no one is complaining about that here...just quotas in general.

TruBlue

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 5:16 p.m.

EyeheartA2: Actually that part of Huron Parkway is suppose to be 45mph. AA lost a case in court about how the determine speed limits. My wife were just discussing this last weekend. Why haven't they changed the signs? Sounds like something Annarbor.com should investigate. http://blog.mlive.com/annarbornews/2008/01/judge_speeding_tickets_violate.html I always thought cops had and quota and this just proves it. Really shameful that cops and government can't be trusted.

nxil2009

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 5:05 p.m.

#1 The single biggest deterrent to crime is officer presence. Whether they are visible in a high traffic area of high crime area or any area at all for that matter. You don't need to write tickets or even do traffic stops to deter crime. #2 Police budgets are shrinking (not necessarily out of necessity but out of choice) and there are less police officers to do the same (actually more) work. Many agencies use their "patrol officers" as their "investigative officers": i.e. detectives. Leading to my next point: #3 This means that whether it is an armed robbery, home invasion, domestic assault, fraud, rape, attempt murder...the same officer who writes a speeding ticket is the one conducting a serious and vital investigation. Police officers do not make widgets. They are not assembly line workers. Making quotas for anything whether arrests, traffic stops, tickets, contacts, etc...is counter-productive to effective police work. #4 Quotas are management's lazy attempt to make a very few lazy employees pick up the pace. They punish good, hard working employees for the sins of a couple. But worse yet, they punish the victims of real, and terrible crimes by not allowing their "detectives" to investigate free from arbitrary and ridiculous quotas. The next time you feel like a police officer didn't spend enough time investigating your home invasion where your personal stuff was violated and stolen, just remember he has to get out there and issue some tickets or else he will get written up. #5 Did you notice that the Ypsi officer got written up for 5 policy violations related to one issue of failing to meet her ticket quota? It isn't enough to find her in violation of the ticket quota policy? Does she also needs to be in violation of 4 other policies? Wonder why a cop isn't so nice sometimes? #6 The state statute says that even if there is a quota as a part of an evaluation, it shall not be given any more consideration than any other performance area. The Ypsi cop was written up for 5 policy violations while performing her other assigned duties including investigating real crimes. Sound like more consideration to me. #7 To be sure, quotas are also about money. In fact some court clerks/secretaries jobs are paid partially or wholly by revenue generated from tickets. Does this seem right? #8 A regular police officer (not specially assigned traffic units or true detectives or any other special assigned position) needs to be available to handle in-progress, serious crimes, and be allowed the flexibility to balance the need to investigate crimes and perform routine duties such as traffic enforcement. Leave the quotas to those specifically assigned to traffic units or details. #9 Bosses, stop being as lazy as the employees whose lazy behavior you are trying to correct. You punish good employees. And the worst part is you are a hypocrite; which means you lose respect. Deal with the employees who are the problems and leave everyone else alone.

Stephen Cain

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:59 p.m.

1. Traffic stops are a crime fighting tool particularly when combined (unofficially) with profiling. I'm not defending it. just stating it as a reality. Certain kinds of traffic stops combined with searches of curious legality are fairly efficient at finding drugs and guns. 2. I don't like tickets any more than the next person, but the odds of my getting killed by a drunk driver are several orders of magnitude greater than my getting shot during a holdup. How can anyone sensibly argue that traffic enforcement isn't a major component of public safety? 3. Finally, only one of the 53 commenters seems to have read the story closely. When the former police chief mandated that officers appear in court on (contested?) tickets, the number of tickets being issued dropped off. Folks got the idea and started contesting tickets they might otherwise have paid. So, the chief issued the quota system.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:59 p.m.

@Eyehart are you sure your comment was directed at me?

Lokalisierung

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:57 p.m.

Times are getting tight for everyone i can tell. I saw an AAPD car sitting with it's lights off at the bottom of the on ramp onto 94/ann arbor saline. I was getting on the highway and didn't see them to the last monute...dangerous. As for traps The only real problem one I have is Geddes @ Shipman. That's a seriously tough road to do 25 on! Most places like in front of Crysler if you don't see them a half mile away that's your fault.

Pete Bigelow

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:55 p.m.

Two comments have been removed from this thread because they were off-topic. Please stick to discussing the story and not prostitution. Thanks.

djm12652

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:44 p.m.

Now, I am just a simple old woman with an extreme idea...how about everyone here griping about tickets, do something novel...obey all traffic laws and vehicle/equipment regulations and then there would be no need to stress over whether there is a quota in place or not...I could care less if there were requirements for our officers to issue 300 a month tickets. I know I'm not going to be one of the recipients...

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:43 p.m.

Ypsi also this subject is about patrol officers.If you report a buglary a officer WILL respond and take a report.Detectives are'nt put on traffic detail

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:37 p.m.

Ypsilivin could you post a link or tell me where to go so I could see exactly what was said? I do remember something like that but I'd like to see more details

YpsiLivin

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 4:27 p.m.

@thinkplease sorry to disappoint you but the things you listed are never given a back seat over ticket writing, just a fact TDW, Then how do you explain the former AAPD chief of police stating publicly that his department would no longer investigate burglaries, but that they were hiring an officer exclusively to write tickets?

DaLast word

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 3:16 p.m.

I always figured there was some kind of quota, even if it was silent. So what happens at the end of the month when a officer is falling a little short? Maybe this explains why TWICE on Pleasent lake road, I was being tailgated at 55mph and I felt like I was being "pushed" only to find out in both cases it was a Wash cty sheriff deputy. I didn't take the bait and he turn off. Scary stuff!!!

The Kingpin

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 2:40 p.m.

Tickets...quotas...whatever. Like a lot of posters said, you could write 30 tickets a day with the amount of goofs driving around. What I think is unfair, is that cops can park and hide, setting traps for people. That is a waste of time. Cruise the streets! If I sat around all day at my job, waiting for something to happen, I would get fired! The only exception for me, would be an area with numerous complaints of speeders, sign runners, etc... There are a lot of areas that complain of rampant prostitution, drug dealing and other nefarious activities...but we don't usually park a patrol car there, and have the situation monitored by the cops. Why? Because they are parked somewhere else, waiting for speeders. Do your jobs, fuzz

Lokalisierung

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 2:37 p.m.

"Prositution and drug use will just escallate." Rather have prostitutes around then people speeding.

Move On

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 2:37 p.m.

The real point here is, the directive previously issued by the former police chief, was illegal. The requirement to have officers issue 30 citations per month was never really a part of the officers performance evaluation system and the Arbitrator found that it was "significant" that such an evaluation system was not presented as evidence. Additionally the arbitrator stated that to charge an officer for: misconduct, insubordination, neglect of duty and unsatisfactory performance was nothing but Pile On and was overcharging. Was this the right thing to do to a 15 year veteran officer?. Can you imagine how an officer feels to have such charges listed and maintained in their personnel file? I would imagine that this has been very disheartening and de-motivating for the officers that have been disciplined because of the directive.

MjC

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 2 p.m.

I'm not a police officer, but I could give out more than 30 tickets a day just by driving around town spotting people speeding, running red lights, or even stopping at green lights because they're too busy texting instead of driving... who needs a quota?

Martin Church

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 1:52 p.m.

What everyone is missing is the fact the city has been losing money in court because the officer did not show up. The failure to show up in court is more of a problem then the lack of tickets written. If you are going to charge some one with a violation you need to show up. Now with the loss of Police officers on the street due to budget ax, there will be less officers showing up at the courthouse. So Why even wright a ticket, the offender will just walk away. Prositution and drug use will just escallate. Guess it's time for the citizens of this community to start defending themselves.

1ofalpha

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 1:37 p.m.

Good for Officer Annette Coppoc. I think there are sufficient tasks, and some very challenging, for police officers other than "tracking down" motor vehicle violations. Whoa. A Day In The Life of the Looney Bin.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 1:26 p.m.

This type of thread always amaizes me.All the complaints that cops should be looking for "real" criminals compareing them to bandits and theives and yet not one can offer a soultion or idea on how could or should traffic be controlled.Anyone? Anyone?

Lokalisierung

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 1:18 p.m.

Here we go again....outrage everywhere from ticket writing! Agree with everyone that thinks people think they are too good or above following the law and shouldn't getr repremanded for breaking the law. I break the law everyday in my car multiple times, and if I get caught I don't whine or complain, I accept it. Simple solution, Day 1 write a ticket everytime somone doesn't use a turn signal. There's your 30 in one day and you've hopefully taught annoying people a lesson. Day 2, sit by a crosswalk and pull over everyone that doesn't stop for pedestrains. There's 30 more tickets and you have 28 days left to "fight violent crime" or whatever people here want you to do. Also agree with the poster who said many traffic stops lead to arrests and finding bench warrents etc.

SW40

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 12:43 p.m.

Stop crying about traffic stops, every year they lead to the arrest of criminals for crimes ranging from simple misdemeanors to murderers. Maybe we should just ask our police officers to stop any type of proactive community policing and end all traffic stops and patrolling then our crime rates will surely go down. Wake-up everyone the boogey man isn't out to get you.

AAJoker

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 12:40 p.m.

30 a month truly seems like a joke as there are streets where any reasonably awake officer could write this quantity in a shift! Between the increase in speeders (due to a complete lack of enforcement and visibility), the broken tail lights, the too loud to be legal Harley and drivers on cell phones doing randoms stupid acts... I think we should bump this to 200!

SW40

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 12:38 p.m.

Alright listen up everyone bashing quota systems. I agree with the belief that traffic stops shouldn't be used as a revenue stream for a city however guess what criminals drive cars. Traffic stops lead to the arrest of rapists, murderers, drug traffickers, wife-beaters, child-porn perverts and a host of other de-generates that need to be taken off the street. This forum has shown how most people have received a speeding ticket and now they hate traffic stops and probably to an extent police officers for doing their jobs. Bottom line traffic stops are one of the most effective tools in fighting crime. See in this country their are X number of criminals and trust me that number is much higher than the number of police officers so either you let the police do their job with proven methods or we can do away with traffic stops and maybe any type of proactive community policing and see how that helps the crime rates in our cities.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 12:38 p.m.

Oh and comapairing cops to mexican bandits scnice when do bandits not take your money at gun point and allow you to go to court and fight it? real logical comparison

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 12:29 p.m.

I love it when people say police should be looking for real crime.Ok then lets just elimiate drivers liceneses and let people drive however they please.While we're at it lets get of stop lights,signs,and speed limits and let everyone be on a honor system.I would like to see how the posters listed above (in my comment)think of this idea

katie

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 11:59 a.m.

I agree with other posters who have said that the police should focus on violent crime first, not become ticket writers. It's the problem with bureaucracies. If we are going to be losing funding for police, do we want a bunch of ticket writers, or do we want those who go after crimes? I'm not slamming the police here, but rather the priorities they are assigned by the system that they are part of.

The Grinch

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 11 a.m.

Janelle, Actually, you and I don't disagree. That was my point about hiring more police. Short of that, having a handful of police stretched over a large area, as happens in every police force in the state, provides little in the way of deterrence. Indeed, put more police on the road every day during rush hours patrolling main thoroughfares and ticketing unsafe drivers will have a huge impact on driving habits. And let me tell you that statistics show I'm far more likely to have an auto accident than I am to have my home broken into. So let me tell you where I'd like that deterrence effort made.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 10:45 a.m.

@Janelle the only time police need to hide is when they are targeting certian problem areas.Most people get tickets because they are tottaly oblivious or don't care whats going around them

Atticus F.

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 10:44 a.m.

In my experience, Ypsi cops are pretty cool. Same with AAPD. All it takes is a trip through Van Buren, Canton, Northville twp, in a clunker, and you will quikly realize how good we have it in this area.

Kazia

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 10:36 a.m.

Since the main motivation for writing tickets is to generate revenue, why not streamline the process? To make everyone's life easier, why not simply have a "ticket lottery" every month with all licensed drivers eligible. Unfortunately, "winning" the ticket lottery would mean you would have to pay a fine. Just like any other lottery there would be various categories of "winning," each with a different "prize." This would save a lot of time and free up the police to do what they are supposed to do: protect the public, not make generate revenue. And, yes, I am being facetious.

Janelle Baranowski

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 10:29 a.m.

@The Grinch I disagree. When cops are present, people tend to behave. Personally, I would rather have an officer driving around, which in turn results in less crime and traffic violations over a larger area. If officers want to issue tickets, they usually park somewhat hidden and wait for someone to pass by.

Midtowner

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 10:12 a.m.

jason is right. north congress is like the talladega speedway. do the cops even know there is a congress street?

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 10:01 a.m.

The station is on Michigan ave not Congress

The Grinch

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:57 a.m.

actionjackson has it right. There should be no need for quotas because in the 30 minutes I drive to work every morning I see at least half a dozen people exceeding the speed limit by 15 to 20 mph, another 10 oe so tailgating at full highway speeds, and several more weaving in and out of traffic and drafting as if they're NASCAR drivers at MIS. If patrol officers aren't issuing one ticket per day, they're not looking. If this provides revenue for localities: GREAT. If you don't like it, observe the law and quit putting the rest of us at risk by your absurd driving habits. As for comments about police either investigating and/or preventing other crimes (e.g., burglaries) rather than issuing tickets, patrol officers do little of the former. As for the latter, short of putting hundreds of police on the street, not certain how they accomplish it.

Jason Kefalas

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:23 a.m.

Considering the rising crime rate, the Ypsi Police have been doing a very good job. That said, if they want to write a lot of traffic tickets, all they need to do is look out of the station window at all the morons that speed up the hill on N. Congress.

actionjackson

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:21 a.m.

Not even being on the road an hour a day and I see at least a half a dozen issuable citations! Most drivers see some pretty crazy acts out there on the road. "Where was a cop for that one."

Kvetchmeister

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:19 a.m.

in4mation FTW! Haha!

thed47

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:14 a.m.

Shouldn't cops be out solving crime? How about focusing on violent criminals that pollute our community instead of hunting down loose brake lights. My belief is that once these folks see this as a revenue generator, they must constantly feed the beast!

em

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:12 a.m.

This really makes me wonder how many other divisions have similar rules in place. This is not cool at all! Has the relsease of this information prompted an investigation to other locations? It should!

Kristine

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:12 a.m.

@ YpsiLivin, you said, "Unfortunately, the State has determined that the issuing agency gets to keep the money from the ticket." I beg to differ. I received a $130 ticket in Ann Arbor in mid-December; here's how it's broken down, and I quote: "$40 STATE COSTS; $10 Public Safety; $80 Ordnce F & C".

Janelle Baranowski

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:07 a.m.

@donderop I looked at some of the links and it appears that the question isn't the legality of quotas, but rather the legality of how quotas are used in disciplining officers. It seems that quotas are perfectly legal (which is absolutely ludicrous!)

Plubius

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 9:01 a.m.

Anyone who thinks that cops are anything other than armed tax collectors - open your eyes. This is why we fought a war with England in 1775 - time to start fighting again?

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 8:51 a.m.

@thinkplease sorry to disappoint you but the things you listed are never given a back seat over ticket writing, just a fact

mmggttnn

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 8:50 a.m.

Here we go again! Raising fees to get more money from us strapped taxpayers. More money for government to waste. Don't they know that unwarranted tickets will increase our insurance premiums? C'mon government, instead of screwing us drivers, cut your costs and live within your means.

Skeb Bpow

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 8:50 a.m.

I agree with V-Rex. What if the officer didn't observe enough violations per month? Then what? Issue tickets on trumped charges? @ tdw Attitude can make the difference between a ticket and a warning, except when an officer risks reprimand for not issuing enough tickets.

SMAIVE

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 8:43 a.m.

Totally agee with you "donderop". This article definitely needs some follow-up and futher clarification.

bob

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 8:03 a.m.

I heard that the quota 30 "public contacts" a month. Maybe annarbor.com could FIOA a copy of the policy and print it. Also, 30 tickets or contacts (whichever it really is) a month....there are at least 20 work days in a month so mathematically that is only 1.5 tickets/contacts per day. Doesn't seem extreme.

thinkplease

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 7:59 a.m.

Perhaps it would make more sense if the time spent attempting to fill a ticket quota was spent attempting to thwart or, crazily enough, investigate burglaries and end violent crime. Just a wacky thought I had.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 7:55 a.m.

BTW rember attitude,attitude,attitude can mean the diffrence between a ticket and a warning.And NEVER use the phrase "if I get another ticket I'll loose my liscence" all that says is " I never learn "

YpsiLivin

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 7:53 a.m.

There is a public safety rationale for writing tickets, which few people could argue. Unfortunately, the State has determined that the issuing agency gets to keep the money from the ticket. That automatically turns ticket-writing into a revenue generator for each city, township, county, etc. and somewhere along the line the city manager will decide that it's perfectly acceptable to plan on/budget for receiving a certain amount of revenue each year from tickets. Once this figure gets institutionalized into the City budget, a quota is the only natural mechanism to make sure the City doesn't end up in the hole. If cities are going to keep the revenue generated from tickets, the city should be forced to escrow the money until the following budget cycle so they know exactly how much "extra revenue" they're working with and there's no pressure on officers to write chump tickets to make the city manager happy.

Craig Lounsbury

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 7:42 a.m.

"...18 tickets shy on her last day of work that month." One needs to be extra careful in the last week of the month as officers scramble to meet "production". To a lesser degree the first week of the month as some endeavor to get a jump start on their monthly requirement and not wait till the last minute.

tdw

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 7:31 a.m.

Although "quotas" may not exist in most depts a officer can be called out for not being "productive" if they don't write enough tickets(I know this personaly).I always tried to write a B.S. ticket( I tried to avoid moving violations because of insurance increases )such as a plate violation obstructive view etc or a waveable ticket that would'nt cost anything or add points.But I never pulled over someone for no reason.But having a official quota is really stupid,there's plenty of violations that a officer can write without an offical policy

V-Rex

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 6:58 a.m.

I cannot believe my eyes. No one has brought up this point about ticket quotas. What if there really were not enough visible violations one month for all officers to meet their quotas? Do they all need to find a reason to give a citation to a non-violator, or to falsely accuse someone? To hell with labor law, this should be unconstitutional based on citizens rights! The ACLU should be all over this!

michigan48103

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 6:37 a.m.

The officer that was given problems about the tickets should get a promotion for the stress and the supervisor should be fired or promoted to Janitor. It is so stressful to go to a job and be treated wrong for no good reason.

donderop

Fri, Feb 5, 2010 : 6:36 a.m.

"Ypsilanti police officers are required to write 30 tickets or issue 30 warnings a month. Such quotas are illegal and its clearly stated in the motor vehicle code," Officer Robert Peto said. By law, a quota must be incorporated into an officer's performance evaluation, which wasn't the case in Ypsilanti, the arbitrator found."...So IS it or ISN'T it against the law? Anybody else confused?