May 11, 2017 9:41 am
Updated: May 11, 2017 9:42 am

Future of Winnipeg police Air1 chopper up in the air

The future of the Winnipeg police helicopter is up in the air. Mayor Brian Bowman said it's ultimately up to the Winnipeg Police Board whether it will stay flying.

Winnipeg Police Service / File

The future of the Air-1 police chopper is now in the hands of the Winnipeg Police Board.

In 2016, the former NDP provincial government had planned to conduct an external review on whether it was worth keeping in the sky, but the province is now scrapping that.

The city paid $3.5 million to purchase the helicopter and the province funds $1.3 million for annual operating costs.

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Justice Minister, Heather Stefanson said the city can choose to use part of the money the province is allocating to them to pay for it, if they decide to keep it.

RELATED: RCMP loan infrared camera to Winnipeg police to help get Air1 off ground

Mayor Brian Bowman told 680 CJOB he hopes the chopper stays in the air, but it’s not up to him.

“It is an incredibly powerful tool, whether or not it makes the business case for those resources to be there or not, I think an external review would be very advantages. Ultimately the police board decided on these kinds of matters.”

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