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10/4/2006
Maryland Bans Ticket Quotas
A Maryland law took effect this week banning police traffic ticket quotas.

Delegate Smiegel, Governor Ehrlich
A new law took effect Sunday banning Maryland police officials from punishing rank and file officers for failing to issue a given number of traffic tickets. The measure, introduced by Delegate Michael D. Smigiel Sr. (R-Elkton) is meant to prevent traffic tickets from becoming a steady source of revenue for state police and local departments.

"A law enforcement agency may not... use the number of... citations issued by a law enforcement officer as the sole or primary criterion for promotion, demotion, dismissal, or transfer of the officer," the new law states.

The bill passed by wide margins in April after lawmakers watered down the original bill which gave individual officers the right to enforce the quota ban by bringing suit against the department. The revised law also allows police to create a ticket quota in the form of percentages -- a change not present in Smigiel's original legislation.

Article Excerpt:

Maryland State Legislature
HOUSE BILL 13
By: Delegate Smigiel

AN ACT concerning Law Enforcement Agencies - Prohibition Against Arrest and Citation Quotas

FOR the purpose of prohibiting a law enforcement agency from establishing a quota for the agency or law enforcement officers of the agency for making arrests or issuing citations; prohibiting a law enforcement agency from using the number of arrests made or citations issued by a law enforcement officer as the sole or primary criterion for promotion, demotion, dismissal, or transfer of the officer; providing for an exception under certain circumstances; defining a certain term; and generally relating to law enforcement agencies and quotas for making arrests or issuing citations.

BY adding to Article - Public Safety
3-504.
(A) IN THIS SECTION, "QUOTA" MEANS THE MANDATING OF A FINITE NUMBER F ARRESTS MADE OR CITATIONS ISSUED THAT A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER MUST MEET IN A SPECIFIED TIME PERIOD.

(B) A LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY MAY NOT:

(1) ESTABLISH A FORMAL OR INFORMAL QUOTA FOR THE LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY OR LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS OF THE AGENCY; OR

(2) USE THE NUMBER OF ARRESTS MADE OR CITATIONS ISSUED BY A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER AS THE SOLE OR PRIMARY CRITERION FOR PROMOTION, DEMOTION, DISMISSAL, OR TRANSFER OF THE OFFICER.

(C) THIS SECTION DOES NOT PRECLUDE A LAW ENFORCEMENT AGENCY FROM:

(1) USING QUANTITATIVE DATA FOR ARRESTS, CITATIONS, AND OTHER LAW ENFORCEMENT ACTIVITIES AS MANAGEMENT TOOLS OR IN EVALUATING PERFORMANCE;

(2) COLLECTING, ANALYZING, AND APPLYING INFORMATION CONCERNING THE NUMBER OF ARRESTS AND CITATIONS IN ORDER TO ENSURE THAT A PARTICULAR LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER OR GROUP OF LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS DOES NOT VIOLATE AN APPLICABLE LEGAL OBLIGATION; OR

(3) ASSESSING THE PROPORTION OF THE ARRESTS MADE AND CITATIONS ISSUED BY A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER OR GROUP OF LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS.

SECTION 2. AND BE IT FURTHER ENACTED, That this Act shall take effect October 1, 2006.


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