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Police Transparency and Budget

Police Transparency and Budget, A pretty fair discussion of the reports the CPS is presenting to Cobourg Council this week. As usual any mention of the Police, in whatever context draws two types of comments: some by the ‘hang-em-high’ crowd and the usual whines from the Taxfighters.

The topic of using a local Police Service as opposed to the OPP is like a bad penny it will never disappear because the proponents are like zombies – they just refuse to die. Even when faced with arguments of inferior service for the same money or just Regionalisation these zombies just keep coming at you.

The ‘hang-em-high’ crowd just want to bitch about the decline, in their own minds, in local standards and values. Homelessness and its attendant ills, Graffiti on local walls, the lack of foot patrols and anything else that can be blamed on the CPS.

A new topic was raised in this post – bail reform was debated vigourously. Debate is used lightly as only one side prevailed, whilst the Chief of the CPS did point out he couldn’t do anything about the problem of ‘catch and release’.

Getting to the meat of the post – the report about the Police budget and an RFP for a Facilities Study it appears that the commenters really only put forth stale opinions about where a new facility should go.

A couple of commenters posited that amalgamation of the PHPS and the CPS should take place – I agree. But that ship has sailed. I can remember at least four or five rationalisation/amalgamation studies have taken place over the last 30 years and all have failed. The last one, conducted by Mayor (I am the greatest Mayor of Cobourg since my Dad) Peter Delanty went right down to the wire. Because negotiations were conducted in secrecy the real reasons for the breakdown have never been revealed. Others have covered shared services and communications. If anybody has the institutional memory about all of these one should talk to Dean Pepper the CPS Chair he has been present in most of them.

Another suggestion was to invite Hamilton Twp to the talks again. In the 90s Ham Twp was policed under a shared services agreement, it was ripped up a few years later because a retired PHPS cop sat on Ham Twp Council and with his usual antithapy and PHPS bias coupled with a Mayor that really didn’t want anything to do with Cobourg said “Enough”.

Anyway to sum up my opinion is that if the OPP comes up with a reasonable and competitive financial package and can guarantee coverage and reponse time equal to the Status Quo then we should look at it. I used to be a total CPS booster but when they contracted out local jobs with the disbandment of the comms/local dispatch dept they lost me.

The topic of moving to a new facility is also too late. The CPS for one reason or another has passed on moving before. The Medical buiding opposite the High School was a suggested location as was the V13 building but for some reason the CPS preferred to pour millions into the Armouries building so in my mind they are stuck with it.

I would suggest that the CPS stick with basics and toss the toys – Segways and the Harley.

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