Tag Archives: Policing

From the Mud Creek News

A submission from David Daniels, also available in the Mud Creek News which may, or may not be, at the Post Office.

LEADERSHIP BY OMISSION OR HOW DECISIONS ARE MADE BY DOING NOTHING

The RCMP’S long term contract under which it provides policing services to the Town is set to expire in March, 2012.  The Town budgeted $1,131,400 for police protection for fiscal year 2011-2012.  That amounts to slightly less than 15% of the Town’s total operating budget or about 1 out of every 7 tax dollars goes towards policing.

Has the Mayor led a public effort to investigate whether
Town residents are satisfied with the policing services provided by the RCMP before a new multi-year contract is signed?  Has the Mayor or Council explored alternatives to the RCMP such as a cooperative agreement with the Kentville police department or Kings County or forming its own police force, which it once had?  Has the Mayor even informed the public about the status of the RCMP contract?  (The two 2011 Mayor’s Newsletters did not contain any mention that the RCMP contract would be expiring in March of 2012.)

Chapter 38 of the Town’s Bylaws states that the Police Services Advisory Committee  “ . . . shall make a complete annual report to Town Council, and other reports from time to time as required.”   It also requires the Committee “To provide annually to Council and the NCO an evaluation of the policing services with the Town with reference to Policing Goals and Objectives as stated.”  

If such reports were available, at least the Council and public might be able to make an informed decision about the policing services provided by the RCMP.  But there are no such reports on the Town’s website. 

In 2009, the Town spent $20,000 on consultants to write a Public Engagement Tool Kit.  The Tool Kit includes a Public Participation Process 


Checklist/Guide.  If the Council had gone through the checklist, which it did not, it might have decided to engage the public on this issue.  

It isn’t as though this issue snuck up on the Mayor; it’s been known for years that the RCMP contract was ending in March 2012.  If the Town Council could spend time deciding whether the Witch Hazel should be the official tree of Wolfville, it had the time to discuss with the public whether it was getting its money’s worth from a $1.13 million expenditure.

I don’t know if the Town should sign another multi-year contract with the RCMP; I don’t know if there are other options available; or whether the contract for RCMP policing can be modified to better serve the needs of Town residents.  I didn’t live in the Town when it had its own police force.   

Why hasn’t the Mayor or Council pushed for public consultation on this issue?  Is it because the Mayor and other Council members feel it is not an important issue warranting public engagement?  Do they  believe that there are no good alternatives?   

Whatever the reason, it doesn’t matter anymore.  It’s too late.  By doing nothing, a decision has been made.

Alarming

Here is some news of note concerning policing:

The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) are developing a provincial strategy in relation to police response to alarms. …“Say we get an alarm, we go and find a mouse has run across the floor or a box fell,” Berwick RCMP Cpl. Mike Carter told Berwick council February 22.

The proposed strategy would see RCMP move to a “verified response” model for single-zone alarm incidents. A verified response means some form of verification has been made by an alarm company or an eye witness there has been an unwanted intrusion before police will attend. …

To March 15, the RCMP are requesting home and business owners provide feedback on the strategy via an online form on the Nova Scotia RCMP website. Information about the proposed changes to alarm response may alse be found.

RCMP will continue to be dispatched to multi-zone alarms such as glass breaks, hold-up alarms, panic alarms, and medical alarms etc. [emph. ours]

read more

AND

Kentville’s emergency services raced to almost 200 alarms in 2010, only to discover they were false.

The town is getting serious about reigning in the problem with a new bylaw that would fine repeat offenders $200 to $10,000. …

Mander pointed out the bylaw is “more focused on the commercial side of things” and education, as well as officer discretion, would be part of the implementation.

Council originally discussed partnering with Kings County and Kings RCMP on the issue, but Mander said that was no longer on the table.

The RCMP has gone to a different strategy to reduce alarms,” he said, “which, in my view, will put more people at risk.”

Police Chief Mark Mander presented the proposed regulation to Kentville’s council advisory committee Oct. 11. Home and business owners would also be banned from having their alarm system automatically dial emergency services. [emph ours]

Read it all

It’s a puzzle why , when we are told everywhere that crime is decreasing, that the From the Cruiser section gets longer every year. The perception of the public is contrary to the official statistics. Could it be that satisfactory police response is decreasing even faster than the crime rate?

Smoking war heats up

Wolfville started the idiocy  of a ” no smoking in the car with kids bylaw”  [the mayor was so proud of it] and it has been picked up by various municipalities and provinces (NS and Ont.)  since, jumping on the bandwagon. The whole idea of such a  law was idiotic as we pointed out at the time but most idiotic of all was the age of the “child” specified, 19 and under (16 and under in Ont) . At a certain age the “child” is old enough to choose to smoke a legal product [if he did not buy them himself] and it was predictable that eventually this would be pointed out to the authorities in no uncertain terms. It has happened.

…Const. Tammie Hartford, pulled over 20-year-old Port Hope resident Tory Ashton and wrote him a $155 ticket for smoking in his vehicle with a person under age 16 present.

Ashton was transporting several passengers, including a 15-year-old girl. While the ticket was being written, the girl — who is a smoker — got out of the car and legally lit up a cigarette.

Of course.  The police tried to tell our Council of the difficulties and implications (although in much too nice a way) but we think the Council members of the day didn’t have too much respect for the opinions of the RCMP.

It’s only a matter of time before someone “snaps” after being pulled over under Ontario’s new law forbidding smoking in a vehicle carrying a minor, a police officer said Monday in response to a quirk in the legislation that was made evident during a weekend incident.

“People got mad enough when they couldn’t smoke in bars anymore or bingo parlours,” said Sgt. Bryant Wood, a police officer in the eastern Ontario town of Port Hope.

“Now you’re telling them they can’t smoke in cars. At some point somebody’s going to snap along the way here.”

The police should be concerned about something else. What are we teaching our children and even our adult citizens? That laws are stupid, that’s what. And then we wonder why they no longer have respect for authority, including the police who are told to enforce these idiotic laws.

Wood, who has been a police officer for 16 years, said he anticipates that as more people are written up in Ontario for the new driving violation, problems will arise.

“The problem is people believe they have the right to smoke,” he said. “It’s their vehicle, it’s their free will to be able to have a cigarette.

“Generally speaking, I think we’re going to run into a lot of bad attitudes when we pull people over for that. It’s going to become almost a human-rights issue for them.”

We remember that civil liberties were barely mentioned in passing when the issue was rubber stamped discussed here at Council [one can certainly not call it debate and even discussion is an inaccurate term for what passed as consideration].

“They” say this over regulation legislation is “working” , that this is just a glitch. But it is working in ways “they” know nothing of, to turn our citizens into resentful serfs.

Chickens come home to roost. We hope our mayor thinks about this when he reads this story. Pass it on to him will ya?

Wolfville Police under fire

Just got at the PO, as you probably did, Lutz Becker’s open letter to Wolfville residents about Policing in Wolfville.

We would copy the whole thing here except that is hardly fair since Mr. Becker has started his own blog Voices of Wolfville - not to be confused with the other Voices of Wolfville blog that Mr. Daniels has posted on in the past, but which has gone quiet since October, 2008. Note the Continue reading