policeline 560Editor,

"We should look at an adequate level of policing at an affordable cost." That question was posed by Art Knechtel, former Mayor and Chair of the Police Commission, at a Saugeen Shores police facility meeting on August 17 at the Southampton Town Hall. Knechtel's talk included the notion that if the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) assumed policing responsibilities for the municipality, it would result in lower costs for the taxpayers.

This is a section of the 2015 Township of Huron-Kiloss Contract Policing Proposal. The following was included, in terms of an assurance of adequacy and effectiveness of the police service:

• Dedication to resolving community issues through local involvement and community policing committees;
• Availability of additional staffing support from neighbouring detachments, regional headquarters and general headquarters;
• Seamless access to a comprehensive infrastructure and specialized services; and
• Assists the Detachment Commander in determining the local policing priorities and objectives through the Township of Huron-Kinloss’s Police Services Board.

Based on, among other things, an estimate of salary and benefit costs, the policing cost for 2015, associated with the proposal is 971,305.00.


In 2014, the Commander of the OPP's Municipal Police Bureau, Rick Philbin wrote an article addressing "some misconceptions and misunderstandings about how the OPP polices municipalities...and delivery services to 324 municipalities." The article included the following: "Regardless of any changes to billing and raises in 2014, the OPP remains the most cost effective policing option for many municipalities in Ontario...OPP costs, on average are less than half of the average cost of municipal police services” (based on OPP and Ministry of Finance data).


It's incumbent on council to obtain the biggest bang for our tax -payer dollars. So, why not have the OPP Municipal Policing Bureau complete a costing analysis and then decide if a change would be beneficial for the taxpayers of Saugeen Shores?

Barry Ruhl, Sgt.[Ret.] OPP