The parking enforcement company that fired two of its employees accused of forging tickets in Halifax will not have its contract renewed at the end of March, according to city staff.
"We've had performance issues with the current contract holder," said city spokesman Brendan Elliott. "I think it's fair to say both sides have had growing pains and learned a lot over the last two years about what works and what doesn't work.
"We've taken this opportunity to go back to the drawing board, write up a new contract, put it out to tender and hopefully moving forward, will be able to have a really fine-tuned parking enforcement contract."
The firm, Independent Security Services Atlantic, fired two of its employees in October. The company's lawyer said they were writing hundreds of so-called phantom parking tickets while taking time off work.
About 2,200 tickets were either fabricated or used invalid licence plates. The tickets were never put on vehicles and were only written on out-of-province or out-of-country vehicles.
Halifax police charged three employees earlier this month with breach of trust by a public officer and uttering a forged document.
Contract already under review
The company could not be reached for an interview Thursday.
Elliott maintains the contract was under review well before the charges were laid, but said supervising enforcement officers had been a long-standing issue.
He said the review had nothing to do with other performance measures, such as the number of tickets issued, or not issued, by the firm.
"Everything in its entirety was taken into consideration, but it's important to note that this investigation had no role in sparking a review of their contract," Elliott said.
"The key for anyone who's going to take this contract on is to ensure they've got proper supervisory roles in place so that everyone who's on the street is accountable for the work they do."
'Hopeful and optimistic'
The five-year contract with ISSA, which was established in March 2014, is renewable on an annual basis.
It's due to be renewed at the end of March, but the city must have a new tender awarded by then or ISSA can continue enforcing parking rules.
ISSA will not be barred from bidding on the new contract, Elliott said.
"We're certainly confident that if they can look internally to see what challenges we've recognized for them to face, we're hopeful and optimistic that they can come back to us and show us that they recognized our challenges and the things we were concerned with."