An example of a Surrey Police cruiser showcased at Mayor Doug McCallum’s State of the City Address at Civic Hotel on May 7. (Photo: Amy Reid)

Surrey councillors say they’ve now seen policing transition plan

Locke and Hundial decline to share details of the plan, repeat calls for its release to residents

At least three Surrey councillors say they have now laid eyes on the city’s proposed policing transition plan from RCMP to a municipal force.

“We don’t have a copy of the transition plan, but we saw it. We had a brief opportunity to see it,” said Councillor Brenda Locke on Wednesday morning, after a special two-hour closed-door meeting at city hall.

Councillor Jack Hundial said he’s seen it, as well.

But, neither would discuss details of the plan.

Asked to share her initial reactions, Locke only said “the public deserves to see the full accounting and the full report.”

“What I can say is I support the public having a full and transparent opportunity to view the report, and then have full consultation based on that…. This is a decision of a generation. This is critically important,” she added.

SEE ALSO: Surrey showcases police car for a city force B.C. has not yet approved

READ MORE: McCallum says Surrey Police officers will be patrolling streets by July 2020

Locke and Hundial would not reveal the cost impacts outlined in the plan for a new force, but both stressed that it should be released to residents.

“I strongly wish the public will have the opportunity to review this report in its entirety and make their own determination,” said Hundial, who tabled a motion at the city’s last Public Safety Committee meeting to have the report released. “I would say residents need to continue to advocate what’s in the best interests of their community to all levels of government.”

Locke echoed that.

“The public needs to communicate their thoughts and concerns to all three levels of government.”

Neither Locke nor Hundial could say if the report has yet been submitted to the provincial government for approval.

Lone Surrey First Councillor Linda Annis also told the Now-Leader Wednesday that she has now seen the report.

“I’m very disappointed in that the report has been done in total secrecy,” said Annis. “Council has not been privy to providing any input to the report or seeing it as it’s been developed. More importantly, I feel this report should not be kept in secret from the residents in Surrey. We’re beginning consultation tomorrow. How can we consult with the public when they don’t know what’s in the report?”

Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum was not immediately available for comment, but is expected to release a statement Wednesday afternoon.

On May 7, the showcasing of a “Surrey Police” car outside McCallum’s State of the City Address raised eyebrows as the provincial government has not yet approved city council’s plan to transition from the RCMP to a made-in-Surrey police force.

During his speech that day, McCallum reaffirmed his commitment to the transition, a move he said takes “political courage” and is a “political minefield.”

He also unveiled a website, surreypolice.ca, which he says will allow residents to provide input into the creation of the force.

“In the coming weeks we will be asking our residents to tell us which priorities they want to see for their new city police and help guide it into the future,” said McCallum at the time, telling the audience Surrey Police officers would be “patrolling our streets by July 2020.”

Meantime, the City of Surrey is set to embark on public engagement this week. The first in a series of public events is planned at Cloverdale rec centre (6188 176th St.) on Thursday, May 23 from 3 to 7 p.m.

“Residents will be able to learn more about the transition process and offer their input as to which priorities they want to see in shaping the Surrey Police Department,” a City of Surrey release notes.

SEE ALSO: Surrey to begin ‘public engagement process’ on policing transition

Just Posted

Out with a roar: Dinosaurs take over forest at Surrey school on last week of class

Six colourful creatures painted by Grade 3 students led youngsters on an expedition in the outdoor classroom

Surrey city council cost taxpayers nearly $1M in 2018

That includes more than $151,372 in expenses from the former council

Animal advocates yowl after Delta cat severely injured in trap

Blu, a three-year-old house cat, suffered severe damage to his hind leg after being stuck in trap for days

Judge adjusts Charter award in RCMP assault case in Surrey

Former Surrey hotel manager was awarded $65,000 in damages after RCMP assaulted him

‘Epic’ Surrey Pride party to celebrate 20th anniversary at Central City Plaza

Planners of family-friendly event don’t welcome nudity

VIDEO: Killer whale steals fisherman’s catch off North Coast

Fishing duel results in eager orca snagging salmon in Prince Rupert

Fate of accused in Canadian couple’s 1987 killings in jury’s hands

William Talbott’s lawyer says DNA doesn’t prove murder

Child killed after being hit in driveway on Vancouver Island

The driver of the vehicle remained at the crash scene and is fully cooperating

Eating sandwiches, putting on makeup behind the wheel could land you a fine

RCMP say if you cause an accident while eating you could be penalized

40 cats surrendered in apparent hoarding at B.C. home

Officers found the cats living among piles of garbage and feces, suffering from fleas

Vancouver Aquarium drops cetacean ban lawsuit in new lease agreement

Ocean Wise CEO Lasse Gustavsson called the updated lease an exciting new chapter for the aquarium

Plane veers off runway, into ditch at Langley Airport

Fire, ambulance, and police are on scene

Okanagan RCMP bike patrol rolls up on alleged stolen vehicle from Burnaby

The driver, a 30-year-old Kelowna man, has been held in custody and is facing possible charges of possession of stolen property and obstructing a police officer

Man arrested after pimping investigation in Whistler

A 44-year-old man has been charged with procuring and benefiting from sexual services

Most Read

l -->