As of the first of the year, a new law in Illinois will bar Chicago police from going on ticket-writing sprees.
Since 2014, Illinois law has forbidden any requirement “to issue a specific number of citations within a designated period of time.” Law enforcement agencies are prohibited from evaluating personnel based on the number of tickets written or arrests made.
Then-Gov. Pat Quinn stated at the time the law will improve safety and working conditions for police officers and prevent drivers “from facing unnecessary anxiety when they encounter a police vehicle.”
An exemption was applied for municipalities with their own independent inspectors general and law enforcement review authorities. The distinction enabled the city of Chicago’s police department to potentially continue the ticketing practice.
Advocates for the exemption said at the time that Chicago has its own system of oversight in place.
The 4-year-old law permitted state, county and municipal police departments to continue to use officer contacts as an evaluative tool. The exercise covers any instance where an officer makes contact with someone.
The new law approved by state lawmakers earlier this year rescinds the special treatment provided for police in the state’s largest city.
“Policing should not be used as a revenue enhancement strategy for municipalities,” Sen. Bill Cunningham, D-Chicago, said in previous remarks. “Officers will no longer be distracted from their regular law enforcement duties in order to meet ticket quotas.”
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