December 07, 2015 - 11:34 AM
VERNON - There will be more police officers patroling the streets of downtown Vernon next year.
Vernon city council recently voted to approve $330,000 for two additional officer positions effective Jan. 1, 2016.
The detachment says it will use that funding to restore staffing levels in the downtown enforcement unit.
“These officers will assist us in addressing concerns in the downtown area by providing a visible police presence through proactive, targeted patrols,” Supt. Jim McNamara says in a media release. “They'll continue to develop new working relationships and strengthen those we already enjoy with our community partners in an effort to reduce crime, maintain order and create a safe environment for everyone to enjoy.”
The funding bumps up the number of RCMP positions to 50 from 48. According to City of Vernon chief administrative officer Will Pearce, funding was cut in 2013 which reduced the positions from 50 to 48.
“We did that because the detachment was having challenges simply trying to maintain numbers, there was a lot of pressure on Depot (RCMP academy) to train and fill vacant positions across the country,” Pearce says.
The RCMP officer funding isn’t the only investment Vernon council is making in terms of safety improvements. A further $30,000 has been set aside for video surveillance systems in downtown Vernon and $16,800 for dedicated safety patrols in Polson Park.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015