City asks police brotherhood for $12.8M for issuing fewer tickets

The city has filed a grievance against the Montreal Police Brotherhood asking it to fork over $12.8 million for slowing down on issuing tickets.

Police officers issued fewer tickets than usual as part of Bill 3 pressure tactics, city alleges

Montreal Police Brotherhood president Yves Francoeur said the number of accidents on the island of Montreal diminished during the same time frame the city alleges officers slowed down on issuing tickets. (CBC)

The city has filed a grievance against the Montreal Police Brotherhood asking it to fork over $12.8 million for slowing down on issuing tickets.

The city is accusing police officers of not handing out as many tickets since mid-June as a pressure tactic against Bill 3.

Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre says police have issued 30 per cent fewer tickets this year compared to previous years.

"We feel it's not a matter of safety, it’s not a matter of traffic. It’s a matter of a working relationship, and they’re using that because they’re not pleased with [Bill 3]," Coderre said.

In late September, the Quebec labour relations board was asked by the City of Montreal to hold the police union to account for the loss in revenue, and on On Sept. 20, the labour relations board ordered the police to issue tickets as usual.

"There is still a significant decrease in the number of tickets issued by SPVM officers between Sept. 22 and Nov. 2," said city media relations spokesman Gonzalo Nunez on Monday.

Police brotherhood fights back

Yves Francoeur, head of the brotherhood, said the union would fight the grievance.

A Montreal police cruiser covered in Bill 3 protest stickers. (Graham Hughes/CP)

Francoeur said the brotherhood were informed of the grievance on Friday afternoon.

He said he doesn't have access to the data on the number of tickets issued in the months in question, so he can't say whether there's been a decrease.

Francoeur said he does know, however, that for the same three-month period, there were 35 per cent fewer collisions on the island of Montreal.

"How come they can say we didn’t do our job and there’s an important amelioration on data about collisions on the island? We don’t understand," Francoeur said.

“I think the only data important for us is the data about the security of drivers and pedestrians and right now what we can say is we are doing our job, we are doing what we are paid for,"Francoeur said.

“To give tickets — it’s not a question of bringing money to the City Hall. We are not tax collectors.” 

This is not the first time the labour board has been asked to weigh in on Bill 3 pressure tactics.

Following a complaint by the city lodged against the firefighters for apparent slower response times earlier in September, the board ordered the firefighters to "take all necessary measures" to respond to all calls with no delay.