11/20/2014 10:55 EST | Updated 01/20/2015 05:59 EST

City, police union battle quota system before Labour Relations Board

The city of Montreal and its police officers union begin another round in front of the Quebec Labour Relations Board today.

The city says Montreal police are still not issuing tickets at the level they were before protests began over proposed changes to municipal pensions, and it wants the union to pay $12.8 million.

It says that represents the amount the city has lost because police are issuing fewer tickets.

In September, the Labour Relations Board ordered police officers to issue tickets in a way that was “normal and usual” after a hearing with the union and the city.

Not a quota system

Police Chief Marc Parent says it would be wrong to say there is a quota system in place for police officers, preferring to say there is a target they are encouraged to meet per shift.

But the Montreal Police Brotherhood says it's dealing with a quota system, plain and simple. It says setting quotas for fining Montrealers is wrong.

The union says Quebec should outlaw the system the way more than 20 U.S. states have done.

Francoeur says concentrating on giving out tickets takes away from an officer’s duty protect citizens and prevent crime.

“We also know where there’s a lot of accidents, where it’s dangerous for pedestrians and street users, and for us the target has to be there even if we’re going to give only three, four or five tickets, instead of 16 or 18,” Francoeur said.  

He said if a team of officers is not near its quota near the end of the month, the officers will be told to concentrate on handing out tickets and not respond to citizen’s calls as quickly.

“So if you call to make a complaint for a break and entry in your home, or your car has been stolen, you’re going to have to wait for a police officer for many hours,” Francoeur said.