An example of a Surrey Police cruiser, showcased at Mayor Doug McCallum’s State of the City Address at Civic Hotel in May of 2019. (File photo: Amy Reid)

An example of a Surrey Police cruiser, showcased at Mayor Doug McCallum’s State of the City Address at Civic Hotel in May of 2019. (File photo: Amy Reid)

Surrey council to consider report calling for police board to manage FOI requests

Agreement to be forwarded to the Surrey Police Board for its approval

Surrey city council is expected to consider a corporate report Monday night to transfer “applicable work product” from city hall to the Surrey Police Board to make sure records are under the “ownership and control” of the “appropriate” party and requests for access to these records are handled in a “timely and responsive” way.

Council will be asked to authorize an agreement to be forwarded to the Surrey Police Board for its approval.

“I think in 705 days you’ll be looking at that transferring back,” Councillor Jack Hundial said Monday, referring to the Oct. 15, 2022 civic election. “Surrey residents still want to have a voice in the future of how they want to be policed and quite frankly to go through all this work, when there’s a high probability that this plan is not going to come to any sort of fruition, is really a blatant waste of taxpayer dollars from this mayor.”

A staff report by Rob Constanzo, the city’s general manager of corporate services and Terry Waterhouse, the city’s general manager of the policing transition, notes that an agreement is needed to address the “ownership, control and use” of the board’s records and to “implement processes for appropriate document management and public disclosure of those records.”

READ ALSO: Surrey Police Board to start ‘reporting publicly’ on budget numbers in November

The report notes that while the city has a “well-established” Freedom of Information process and will continue to handle requests related to the City of Surrey’s role in the the transition from the RCMP to the Surrey Police Service and records prior to the board being struck, “including the pre-existing board records,” the board going forward will manage requests that “directly concern or relate to board matters, its members and records” that the city developed for the board on or after July 6 this year.

“The Police Board’s Freedom of Information Committee, currently a committee of the whole, will oversee FOI requests and, through the Executive Director, ensure the Board is compliant with FOIPPA,” according to the staff report.



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

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