BOISE - Drivers pulled over for minor traffic violations are getting quite the surprise. Instead of tickets, officers are handing out chocolate bars.

It's all part of an annual goodwill mission to spread holiday cheer along with an important safety message.

One driver pulled over for speeding Thursday morning by Cpl. Kyle Wills was pleasantly surprised by the offering.

"So you will notice there are two candy bars here," Wills explained to the woman. "One is for you, but one is for you to pay it forward to someone that you think could use it."

She responded, "Thank you. Oh, my goodness, so embarrassing!"

Along with the candy, officers are giving out an important reminder.

"Our message to the public is your life is important," Wills said. "We want you to slow down, don't drive distracted, put that seatbelt on, scrape your window."

Another driver who ran a stop sign said he appreciates the effort by police.

"That is a really different feel," he said. "Cops get enough of a bad reputation as it is. It's good to show they are just people trying to be nice."

For his part, Wills enjoys the annual campaign.

"It's a lot of fun for us, and again we get that positive reinforcement for what we are doing from the public as well," he said.