April 16, 2019 12:19 pm
Updated: April 16, 2019 12:32 pm

Coquitlam mayor rejects idea of civic police force as Surrey moves forward on replacing RCMP

Coquitlam RCMP have issued a warning about a group of individuals who stole jewelry from a senior during a distraction scam.

File / Global News

While Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum works toward moving from the RCMP to a civic police force, things are quite different in Coquitlam.

READ MORE: Surrey plans to have new police force running by July 2020: internal memo

Richard Stewart says as long as he is mayor, he would never support replacing RCMP with a municipal force.

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“There’s no reason to. We get excellent service from the Coquitlam RCMP and the men and women from that force serve our community very well. And it would also cost about a third more,” said Stewart.

“The numbers clearly point to about a third increase for Coquitlam in order to go from RCMP to a municipal force and we would get nothing for that, we would get the same amount of officers with a different colour uniform.”

And he says RCMP get plenty of officers.

“If you want more officers, just authorize more officers and they come.”

READ MORE: Surrey Newton MLA weighs in on policing debate

Stewart wrote a blog post about why he supports RCMP and posted it to his Facebook page.

“I won’t get into the debate over whether Surrey should convert to a municipal police force, as that decision is entirely up to their residents,” he wrote.

“But here in Coquitlam, I’d recommend against it, as I believe our annual policing costs would increase by about a third, not counting the amortization of the one-time costs (if you amortized those costs over a full decade, it would add about 10 points more, raising the cost increase to at least 40 per cent.”

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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