May 13, 2014 11:01 pm

Manitoba Marathon seeks help paying police bill

Evans Maiko wins the 35th Manitoba Marathon on June 17, 2013.

Global News

WINNIPEG – The Manitoba Marathon is asking for help from the city to pay a big bill for policing.

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The annual charity event, which runs June 15 this year, will have to pay as much as $20,000 in policing costs for the first time in its 35-year history due to “the recent policy change by the Winnipeg Police Service that they will no longer utilize general patrol officers for parade escorts or special event traffic control,” said Shirley Lumb of the Manitoba Marathon Foundation in a letter to the city dated April 22 and posted on the city’s website.

Marathon organizers said there is no alternative to the 56 officers needed to provide traffic control at intersections along the 26.2 mile route. Paying for the officers “poses a significant impact” on the volunteer-driven event that raises funds in support of projects helping people living with intellectual disabilities.

The Manitoba Marathon Foundation is asking the city for $15,000, made up of a $1,000 grant “from each councillor/ward in the city.” The remainder of the policing cost would be made up from participant fees and corporate sponsorships.

The marathon has about 13,000 participants, a similar number of spectators and about 2,000 volunteers, Lumb said.

City hall’s Executive Policy Committee, which is chaired by Mayor Sam Katz, will vote on the marathon’s request Wednesday.

© Shaw Media, 2014

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