‘Moving forward’: Mayor Brenda Locke on Surrey police transition

The City of Surrey, B.C., appears to be laying out its next steps in the years-long policing transition saga.

Mayor Brenda Locke said during Monday’s council meeting that she still opposes the province’s mandated transition to the Surrey Police Service but it appears the city’s battle on keeping the RCMP may be coming to a close.

“While I’m disappointed by the outcome of the judicial review, I accept the decision and we are moving forward with what the city needs to do to ensure our residents are prioritized with the provincially legislated transition,” Locke said.

“However, the report did find validating information that requires further comprehensive review.”

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Locke said experts will be assembled to work with the province, federal government, Surrey Police Service, police board and RCMP on planning requirements.

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The city also plans to review a report about the projected costs of the transition found in last month’s legal hearings in B.C. Supreme Court.

Locke said it validates her concerns about higher costs to taxpayers and emphasizes the transition is entirely on the B.C. government.

“Irrespective of the province’s legislation about policing here and an imposed target date of this November, there still remains no confirmed plan to get there and no confirmed costing that the city can reasonably rely on for budgeting and fiscal management purposes,” Locke said.

She added that it is the province’s actions and decisions and the city is in the infancy stages of how much this transition will cost taxpayers.

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