Ontario Provincial Police

OPP does not give police costing to Amherstburg

 

By Ron Giofu

 

If the town switches from its current police service, don’t look for the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) to be the service they go to.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo confirmed that the town did not actually get a costing from the OPP and only received a costing from the Windsor Police Service.

“Instead of getting a costing from the OPP, we got a letter saying they are not going to follow our guidelines,” said DiCarlo.

DiCarlo said it was “definitely disappointing” that the OPP took that position, but said he was aware of how costing proposals are presented. The town had guidelines on what it wanted in terms of policing and believed the OPP was unwilling to provide the details the town wanted in a costing whereas Windsor was willing to do so.

 

 

“Our position as the people responsible for the taxpayers dollars is that we don’t have to know every last detail, but someone has to confirm what the taxpayers are paying for,” said DiCarlo. “The OPP refuses to give that information.”

The OPP “basically said no” when asked for the details the town wanted, said DiCarlo. He said it was “incredibly disappointing” the OPP didn’t want to work with the town’s guidelines, adding it was also “very frustrating” that while Windsor was willing the OPP “couldn’t be bothered.”

DiCarlo didn’t doubt the OPP provides an excellent police service, he said he didn’t understand their costing model. He said while the town understands it would get “adequate and effective” policing from the OPP, “they won’t tell us exactly what that means.”

The town will now move forward with the options of switching to the Windsor Police Service or sticking with the current Amherstburg Police Service. That process, including public consultation, should continue early in the new year.

Policing decision could come quicker than anticipated

 

By Ron Giofu

 

Town council has taken the next step in deciding the future of policing in Amherstburg with the final decision possible this term of council.

At the conclusion of Monday night’s meeting, town council re-emerged from an in-camera session and passed a motion that administration be authorized to proceed with the issuance of a request for proposal (RFP) for police services and invited LaSalle, Windsor and the OPP to participate.

Mayor Aldo DiCarlo said the joint police advisory committee has met and the town is ready to proceed to the next stage, which is getting the numbers from the interested police agencies on what costs would look like for them to police the town of Amherstburg.

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While it was looking like it would fall onto the next council to make the final decision, DiCarlo said the process has advanced quicker due to Amherstburg rising in the queue for an OPP costing. A number of municipalities have dropped out, the mayor said, which has led to Amherstburg’s costing request to be granted sooner.

“We will be getting numbers by the end of the summer, if all goes well,” said DiCarlo.

DiCarlo said the town’s two motions still stand as it relates to the OPP coming in and the possibility of a regional police force. He said existing officers with the Amherstburg Police Service would be offered jobs should a switch take place.

Residents are looking for the same standard of policing as they have currently, the mayor stated.

Town council wants to make the decision once and doesn’t want to accept or reject any proposal without knowing all the details, DiCarlo said.

“It was always council’s position to look at all of the options at the same time,” he said. “The goal is to have all of the information in front of us.”

Should a switch be made, DiCarlo said it would be six months to a year before it would be implemented.