City of Grande Prairie expected to vote on municipal police force Monday


By Staff The Canadian Press Posted March 6, 2023 2:10 pm 3:03 Alberta government supports Grande Prairie idea to replace RCMP with local police The city of Grande Prairie has been mulling the idea of replacing the RCMP in northern Alberta city with its own police force, and now the Alberta government says it would provide up to $10 million to help with startup costs. Saif Kaisar reports – Feb 21, 2023 A municipality in northern Alberta is meeting Monday to discuss a proposed city police force that would replace the RCMP. The Alberta government announced last month that it would give Grande Prairie $9.7 million if council were to vote in favour of establishing a city police force.The total cost of the proposed police service is estimated to be $19 million.The province has said it would help cover startup and transitional costs over two years.The RCMP currently provides policing services to the city of about 64,000 people.City council heard that the 2022 budget for policing provided by RCMP (estimated expenses minus grants and revenues) was $25.8 million. Story continues below advertisement City council is expected to make a decision Monday afternoon. 1:45 Alberta budget to include money to help municipalities transition away from RCMP “This isn’t a new exploration for us. This has been over a couple of years,” Grande Prairie Mayor Jackie Clayton said at a news conference Feb. 22.She says there are many benefits to switching from the RCMP to a municipal police service.“Including increasing local oversight, accountability and efficiency offered through a local police commission and local decision-making autonomy,” Clayton added.She also believes this will increase officer recruitment and help with retention.The province is partnering with municipalities to help them with costs related to starting their own municipal police services. Story continues below advertisement “It’s about saying: ‘What’s the best needs for that municipality?’ In some cases, there are some municipalities that have reached out to us and made it explicitly clear, saying: ‘We are content with the current model that we have,’” Alberta public safety minister Mike Ellis said. 5:17 Alberta provincial police ‘off the table’: Finance Minister Travis Toews — With files from Global News &copy 2023 The Canadian Press Sponsored content Flyers

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