Town’s policing funding still in bank with contract delay

The Town of Osoyoos has yet to pay for policing services provided locally by the Royal Canadian Mountain Police in 2017.

In fact, the Town currently does not have a policing contract with the Province, and by extension the federal police force.

“We have not made a payment to the RCMP because we have no contract as yet,” CAO Barry Romanko explained to Council yesterday morning.

“We have not heard back from the province,” he said. “I think the election (is) having some influence on the timing.”

The Town learned earlier this year it would be required to pay 70% of policing costs after a national census put the community’s population at above 5,000.

 

That is an annual budget bump of almost $350,000 — an amount with which Council was not happy.

It instructed Mr. Romanko in March to send its concerns to the Province. As of yesterday, Mr. Romanko said, the Town has not received a reply.

The Town also requested a review of its census designation, a process, Mr. Romanko told Council, could take up to 18 months.

That prompted Counc. CJ Rhodes to wonder what might happen to money paid for policing at the higher rate if Osoyoos was determined to have less than 5,000 people.

“If in fact we do come to some resolution and a contract, and then our census shows that we are below 5,000, my assumption would be the province would refund any monies that we’ve paid,” Mr. Romanko replied.

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