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Surrey RCMP says it will ‘co-operate fully’ as officials weigh transitioning to new police force

Click to play video: 'New information on Surrey’s transition from RCMP to municipal police' New information on Surrey’s transition from RCMP to municipal police
WATCH (June 3, 2019): New information on Surrey's transition from RCMP to municipal police force – Jun 3, 2019

The Surrey RCMP detachment says it will co-operate with stakeholders but is not prepared to comment on a report detailing the city’s plan to transition to a municipal police force.

The plan was publicly released Monday in a report that found making the switch would come with a 10.9 per cent jump in costs and no major increase in the number of officers.

READ MORE: Surrey police transition report projects more than 10% rise in costs, no major officer increase

“As the RCMP is a service provider only, we won’t express our opinion or analysis of the City of Surrey’s report, nor is it appropriate for us to publicly discuss the feasibility of the proposed plan,” said Surrey RCMP assistant commissioner and acting E Division Cmdr. Eric Stubbs.

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“The City of Surrey and the province of British Columbia are signatories to the agreement, and as such, any requests for information should be referred to those parties, which will ultimately decide on the city’s future policing model. The RCMP will co-operate fully and provide input when requested by the province,” he added.

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READ MORE: Surrey residents angered by lack of information on police transition as public consultation starts

Stubbs added that Surrey detachment members continue to have the full support of the RCMP.

Monday’s report also detailed about $40 million in one-time transition funding, which would include $11.8 million to recruit, administer and equip new staff, $7.6 million to transition and upgrade IT tools and $20 million in other transition staffing costs.

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It envisions a Surrey Police Department with a total of 1,150 employees: 805 police officers, 325 civilian positions and 20 community safety personnel.

READ MORE: B.C. premier takes aim at Surrey mayor as report on municipal police transition nears

That’s compared to the current 792 officers of the Surrey RCMP detachment, which has a 51-member vacancy.

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Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum had previously said the force could be up and running by the summer of 2020, but the report offered a new target date of April 1, 2021.

The report is currently in the hands of Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth, and the provincial government has yet to make a final decision on the transition.

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