New Laws Passed in 2016 (Police Quotas Unlawful in SC)

I found a handful of interesting laws that were enacted in 2016, most of which passed and were signed into law by Governor Haley with no fanfare.  For instance, South Carolina Code Section 23-1-245 deems police quotas unlawful.  Specifically, the statue mandates that a law enforcement agency may not require a law enforcement officer to meet a quota for the number of citations he issues during a designated period of time.  This is more symbolic than anything.  From what I've gathered from my almost fifteen years of experience is that official quotas do not exist.  On the record and under oath, I've never observed a police officer admit to a quota system existing.  That is because they don’t' exist, in writing.  In reality, quotas do exist, they just aren't written down.  I have had police officers tell me of issuing more citations towards the end of the month to "get their numbers up"; if that isn't a quota I don't know what is.  Grant money is also tied to performance; flashy new police cars, DUI officer of the year, etc.  The more tickets a police officer writes, the better off he is.

I can't fault the legislature for trying to fix the quota problem, if it is a problem.  But, this statute does nothing to stop unwritten rules, promotions based on the number of citations an officer writes, and more grant money for more tickets.


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