A secret recording of New York City police commanders at a meeting in April does not include a discussion of quotas but rather minimum productivity goals, police spokesman Paul Browne tells the New York Times. “It's absurd to think that managers can't establish goals that require minimum productivity,” he said. “To suggest otherwise would mean no recourse but to let slackers do nothing.” On the tape Capt. Alex Perez is heard saying at the 81st Precinct in Brooklyn, that “day tours” of officers –all officers working a particular daytime shift – should write 20 summonses a week: 5 each for double-parking, parking at a bus stop, driving without a seat belt, and driving while using a cellphone. The Times said it had incorrectly reported that each officer was asked to write 20 summonses.
The captain made clear to supervisors that he would review summonses and that nonproductive officers would face transfers to less family-friendly shifts or even dismissal. On Aug. 30, Gov. David Paterson expanded the state's antiquota statute by outlawing them for tickets, summonses, arrests and stop, question-and-frisk encounters. Patrick Lynch, president of the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, who fought for the law, said of the recordings: “To my ears, it sounds like a quota.” Lynch said the new law “defines the practice as requiring a specific number of police actions within a prescribed period.”