FOI reveals base salary for Surrey Police Department’s new deputy chief

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WATCH: Freedom of information request reveals salary of newly hired deputy chief at the Surrey Police Service. The base salary is higher than the salaries of some senior RCMP officers. Is this just an example of a competitive wage environment or are Surrey taxpayers paying more and getting less? Ted Chernecki reports. – Mar 11, 2021

Surrey residents are getting more insight into how much the top cops in the city’s new municipal police department will be paid.

A freedom of information request filed by a pro-RCMP community group and released by the National Police Federation — the union representing RCMP officers — has revealed new Deputy Chief Jennifer Hyland’s base salary $235,000 per year.

That salary could climb as high as $321,000 with benefits.

Read more: ‘The fix was in’: Hiring process for Surrey municipal police chief raises concerns

The federation says that’s about $50,000 more than an RCMP officer of equivalent rank, who would take home about $180,000 per year.

“When you go to a municipal service, really the taxpayer just wants to know are we going to be paying more and are we going to get value for that dollar?” Brian Sauvé told Global News.

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“No one can answer that question, because when PriceWaterhouseCoopers made their report to the government of B.C., they actually suggested a transparent, full feasibility study so the taxpayer could really know — and that was never done.”

Click to play video: 'FOI reveals cost to taxpayers for Surrey police PR' FOI reveals cost to taxpayers for Surrey police PR
FOI reveals cost to taxpayers for Surrey police PR – Mar 11, 2021

Sauvé went on to describe the salary as “alarming” given the fact the new Surrey Police Department is not actually up and running yet.

To determine senior officers’ salaries, the Surrey Police Board hired a third-party consultant to look at pay scales in police forces in 10 other Canadian cities.

Read more: Norm Lipinski announced as chief of new Surrey municipal police force

The board did not make anyone available for an on-camera interview, but in a statement said salaries in the department would not be the lowest or the highest among comparable Canadian police forces.

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In the Vancouver Police Department, by comparison, a deputy chief earns a base salary of $267,902, up to $285,622 with expenses.

Hyland along with Mike LeSage, former chief officer for the Combined Forces Special Enforcement Unit, have been hired as two of three planned deputy chiefs.

The department announced the hiring of three new officers at inspector rank last Thursday.

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