Police Board responds to Bill 68

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The North Grenville Police Services Board [PSB] has drawn up a Proposal which will be submitted to the Minister for Community Safety & Correctional Services, and local M.P.P., Steve Clark. The Proposal was presented to Council on Tuesday night, moved by Mayor Peckford and Seconded by Mary Boucher, Board member of the PSB.

The PSB have expressed concerns about Bill 68 since the Ontario Government published it, following amendments made to the original Public Safety Act. First introduced by the previous Liberal Government in 2017, it received royal assent in March of 2018. The terms of this Act had left local Police Services Boards unsure as to their future. There seemed to be a possibility that Boards, such as the one we have in North Grenville, could be amalgamated with others in the United Counties, with a resulting loss of influence and input for North Grenville in setting terms and costs of policing in our municipality.

The new Proposal deals with these concerns. The main issue under discussion is the concept of Detachment Boards, possibly amalgamating a number of municipal PSBs into one for a number of municipalities. The Proposal prepared by the NG PSB recommends that regulations be introduced under the Act that would require affected Municipalities to enter into a Detachment Board agreement which would require them to collectively determine and define items such as the composition and size of the Board including Municipal representation, how the municipalities involved would decide on budgets, legal liabilities and representation on the District Board. This representation should be based on population and policing costs of the individual Municipalities.

It is assumed that the Ontario Government will review the Proposal, along with others submitted from other municipalities across the Province, and then draw up the Regulations which will control how the eventual legislation is implemented.

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