The Township of Esquimalt is seeking public input on policing in the community as council looks to decide whether or not to renew the 2014 Policing Framework Agreement by the end of the year.
The township has created dedicated web pages where residents can find fact sheets and background information on policing in the community, with the aim of providing context for the policing needs of Esquimalt and similarly-sized communities in the region.
“We want a dialogue with our community before making any large decisions about policing,” said Mayor Barbara Desjardins in a release. “By joining the conversation about policing in Esquimalt, you will help us make crucial decisions that impact community safety, crime prevention and the use of your tax dollars.”
An open house on the topic is scheduled for May 4 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. in the gallery at Esquimalt Town Square. Residents will be able to have an informal discussion with town staff where they can ask questions and share ideas.
A survey is also running both online and in hard-copy by request until May 14.
More information on the project and how residents can participate is available at esquimalt.ca/Policing.
Since January 2003, policing in Esquimalt has been provided by the Victoria Police Department, which took over following a critical provincial review of the Esquimalt police department in 2002 and subsequent merging of the two organizations.
In April 2014, the township signed a Policing Framework Agreement with the City of Victoria and the Victoria and Esquimalt Police Board. Under the agreement, all parties were to work collaboratively to ensure adequate and effective policing for each municipality, fair and equitable allocation of police resources, and input into the development of the annual policing budget, according to Esquimalt’s website.
Currently, Esquimalt’s share of the total police budget is 13.67 per cent.
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