The Memorial Day weekend promotion in Nassau County, N.Y., was simple, Newsday says: Be among the 10 officers in the precinct who wrote the most seat-belt violations and take home a bottle of champagne. Police union officials didn’t find the idea sparkling and filed a grievance against the county yesterday. “Our incentive is to do our job and you get a paycheck,” said Gary DelaRaba, president of the Nassau County Police Benevolent Association. “To offer champagne as an incentive is morally wrong.”
DelaRaba said that a $5.99 bottle of Freixenet, actually a sparkling wine, for each of the top 10 ticket writers violated labor laws.
Deputy Police Commissioner Robert Bishop said the choice of a reward “may not have been the best idea.” Denne Cohen, president of Mothers Against Drunk Drivers Long Island, said she was glad that none of the officers appeared to have taken a sip before getting behind a wheel.