Surrey RCMP detachment. (File photo: Kevin Hill)

Surrey RCMP doesn’t expect big hit in light of projected $10M cut in B.C. budget

Public safety minister says RCMP informed province about projected budget deficit

Surrey RCMP’s operating budgets “will not be touched” despite a projected $10-million cut for RCMP’s policing costs in B.C.

The RCMP must cut more than $10 million from its policing costs in B.C., as first reported by the Vancouver Sun after obtaining a copy of an email from the province’s top Mountie, Deputy Commissioner Jennifer Strachan.

Surrey RCMP Constable Richard Wright said the detachment doesn’t know which portion of the budget is being cut.

“We don’t know if it’s going to affect anything that affects Surrey, whether it’s going to be the investigational or the training or something like that,” Wright told the Now-Leader, adding that he can’t speak to how the budget has been “trimmed.”

Under the City of Surrey’s current contract, the city pays 90 per cent of the RCMP’s costs and the federal government pays the remaining 10 per cent.

Late Thursday, director of B.C. RCMP communications Dawn Roberts emphasized that the cuts are still just a projection, and the first things on the chopping block are travel expenses, overtime, non-mandatory training, and new equipment.

That won’t be enough, however, she added, so senior officers will need to discuss options with the province.

“We’re trying to be as transparent as possible. We do not want to impact front-line policing operations,” Roberts told Black Press Media in a phone interview.

When asked whether integrated units could be affected, she said: “All of us are looking at our spending envelope and seeing whether or not we can make reductions.”

Integrated units would include the Integrated Homicide Investigation Team and Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit B.C., which are both run out of the BC RCMP’s headquarters in Surrey.

In a statement to Black Press Media on Thursday, Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth said the RCMP has informed the province about a projected budget deficit, and that the impact of budget constraints and inflation has become increasingly difficult to manage.

“This has not impacted significant and continued provincial and federal investments into gangs and organized crime initiatives and prevention,” he said, adding that that includes the integrated anti-gang team, the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit.

Brian Sauve, president of the National Police Federation, said he’s seen the internal email, and called the projected $10-million gap “deeply concerning.”

His main questions focus on how to maintain adequate levels of service and ensure staff receive enough down time. He said he’s seen mention of a “possible freeze” in staffing areas such as transfers and promotions.

However, Sauve said a lack of funding is nothing new.

“Whether it has to do with extra work or working harder to get the job done, they’ll still do it,” he told Black Press Media by phone.

The RCMP has not had union representation until now. The federation was finally certified as the official bargaining agent earlier this year following a historic court ruling in 2015.

Sauve said it will take time to influence budget and other negotiations, but he hopes to provide “the other side of the story” soon.

The Mounties’ B.C. division has not yet returned a request for comment.



lauren.collins@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Lauren on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Surrey school district student enrolment down from projections

‘That’s not something I can say in my time in Surrey, I have ever said at the board table’: superintendent

White Rock acupuncturist suspended for ‘scare tactics, excessive fees’

30-day suspension for Jun Hua (Davy) Hua issued Aug. 18

Mother-daughter charged in 2017 torched-SUV killing in South Surrey now allowed contact

Judge grants Manjit Kaur Deo permission to connect with Inderdeep Kaur Deo through a lawyer

Latimer Road the latest Surrey school to report COVID-19 exposure

Fraser Health has created a new webpage listing COVID-19 cases in schools

PHOTOS: One injured in shooting on South Surrey-Langley border

Shots reported near 194 Street and 34 Avenue, burned-out vehicle found in 18100-block of 12 Avenue

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

VIDEO: B.C. to launch mouth-rinse COVID-19 test for kids

Test involves swishing and gargling saline in mouth and no deep-nasal swab

Young Canadians have curtailed vaping during pandemic, survey finds

The survey funded by Heart & Stroke also found the decrease in vaping frequency is most notable in British Columbia and Ontario

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

B.C. teachers file Labour Relations Board application over COVID-19 classroom concerns

The application comes as B.C.’s second week of the new school year comes to a close

CHARTS: Beyond Metro Vancouver, COVID-19 cases in B.C. haven’t increased much recently

COVID-19 case counts outside of Metro Vancouver have been level since July

70-year-old punched in the head in dispute over disability parking space in Nanaimo

Senior’s turban knocked off in incident at mall parking lot

Most Read