Surrey Police Board restricts pro-RCMP delegations

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Board’s policy changed to restrict delegations on issues ‘beyond the scope of the board’ by having all applicants put in written requests that will be reviewed by the board before getting approved

Surrey residents upset about the creation of a new municipal police force should not take their concerns to the Surrey Police Board, executive director Melissa Granum said Tuesday.

Granum told board members at their second official meeting that those opposing the transition from the RCMP to the Surrey Police Service should not be approved as delegations before the board.

“The SPS has been approved by council and approved by the provincial government. Those are the only two parties with authority over that matter. I’d recommend that any delegations who wish to address this decision should be directed to the city. And individual groups whose position it is that the RCMP should remain the city’s police services — again, not within the scope of the board,” Granum said.

“The board does not govern the relationship with the RCMP and that too is a matter for the city. Finally, delegations related to a referendum are not within the scope of the board and those individuals should also approach city council.”

Granum recommended a change in the board’s policy to restrict delegations on issues that are “beyond the scope of the board” by having all applicants put in written requests, stating their topic, that would be reviewed by the board before getting approved.

Granum said it is important for the public to know “what’s not in the scope for delegations.”

“So any matter over which the board does not have a mandate as for the Police Act does not meet the scope,” she said in the live-streamed virtual meeting. “It’s important … for the public to understand that there will be times when the board must not involve itself in the mandate of either local or provincial government.”

“At the same time, the city itself should not receive delegations where you as the board and the SPS have statutory authority or the mandate,” she said.

Terry Waterhouse, general manager of the transition, presented reports to the board on creating a framework for critical decisions, communicating the city’s policing priorities and interim financial procedures.

Board member Meena Brisard asked about the 2021 budget estimate for the RCMP, stated in the report as $35.6 million.

“I believe we were told it was 2018 when this was drafted and times have changed and the realities as we see them have changed,” she said, adding that the city “most likely won’t have a full force on the ground come March or April next year.”

If the municipal force is delayed, the RCMP budget next year “is probably going to be greater,” she said.

Waterhouse agreed with her assessment and said the 2021 RCMP budget estimate was “determined a year ago.”

“As you know much has changed since then. We anticipate that number being different in 2021.”

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SOURCE: https://www.w24news.com

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