Sooke RCMP pushes to hire 2 more police officers

Sooke RCMP pushes to hire 2 more police officers

If approved, the request could cost province $330K per year

The RCMP is pushing to hire two new officers for the Sooke region – a request that could cost the province $330,000 per year.

Staff Sgt. Jeff McArthur told Sooke council recently that the new positions are needed to deal with growth and an increasing number of complex policing issues.

The new positions would be for rural duties.

The Sooke RCMP detachment has 17 officers, four are funded by the province for rural duties, but all work in and around Sooke as required.

RELATED: Mounties strain to keep staffing on pace with Sooke Region’s growth

Over the last two years, Sooke council has hired two additional officers – one arrived last fall, the other is expected here by the end of April.

It costs $165,000 to fund one police officer position. The province pays 70 per cent of the cost, or $114,200. The remaining 30 per cent is funded by the province. Any position deemed rural is paid fully by the province.

RELATED: Sooke faces challenges of growth

Census data released last year revealed the Sooke region is among one of the fastest growing in the country.

Sooke council would like to see 24-hour police coverage seven days a week, but for that to happen the detachment would need a minimum of four new officers, McArthur said in an interview last year.

The Sooke RCMP detachment covers an area from East Sooke to Port Renfrew.

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