Policing costs a concern in DD
by Terry McQuitty
Policing costs across the province are a great concern to municipalities.
The situation has prompted the development of the Mayor’s Coalition for Affordable, Sustainable and Accountable Policing (ASAP). Recognizing that if policing costs continue to rise at the present rate, municipalities will not be able to afford the bill.
According to ASAP’s first newsletter there are over 150 municipalities that support the organization’s goals. Douro-Dummer is listed as one of the Townships that support the initiative of lowering police costs, but certain concerns were raised at the council meeting on Tuesday.
Deputy Mayor Karl Moher pointed to a paragraph in the newsletter that read as follows: “The current model is inequitable because the cost of policing per resident varies greatly from one municipality to another. The model is based on a complicated formula that means a taxpayer in one municipality may pay hundreds of dollars more annually for policing than a taxpayer in a neighbouring municipality. Mayors must demand realistic payment for policing services.”
Moher took great issue with this statement, because policing costs are based on a per call system. Douro-Dummer has a relatively low call ratio and if the system put forth by ASAP was implemented, police costs in the township would increase.
Ken East of the Douro-Dummer Police Services Board was present at Tuesday’s meeting and council asked if they should lobby ASAP regarding this issue.
East suggested that Jeff Leal would be the person to approach as the province is presently working on the problem. East believes the province will make an announcement on policing costs in the near future.
Mayor J. Murray Jones said that Douro-Dummer has been fighting this idea for 10 years. Calls during the summer months are higher when seassonal residents are present, but for the most part police calls are low.
Copyright 2010 Lakefield Herald Ltd.
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