Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum poses with an example of a Surrey Police cruiser after his State of the City Address at Civic Hotel on May 7. (Photo: Amy Reid)

Surrey Mayor says new city cops could patrol with RCMP by mid 2020

Councillor Jack Hundial, a Surrey Mountie for 25 years before entering politics, is skeptical

Surrey’s mayor says new city force cops could be patrolling alongside the Surrey RCMP by mid 2020 as the city forges ahead with its epic policing transition.

“There’s going to be a period of time where we’re going to have both RCMP officers out there, and our own city police officers,” McCallum told the Now-Leader on Wednesday.

“There’s no way you can change over in one day,” he explained. “You can’t change 850 or 900 in a day.”

McCallum said in a recent videotaped interview, “Your gonna see probably officers out on our street probably in the middle of next year.”

The anticipated launch date of the city’s new force is expected to be April 1, 2021.

“We can’t just start by April 1st, because we have to start before that,” McCallum told the Now-Leader, concerning when new city police officers will begin duty.

Councillor Jack Hundial, who served as a Surrey RCMP officer for 25 years before entering city politics, is skeptical of McCallum’s timeline.

homelessphoto

Jack Hundial

“I think the mayor’s timeline is unrealistic and I think some of the goals in that police report are certainly not going to be able to be attained in time, but like I said, currently Mr. Oppal and the committee are reviewing issues such as HR,” Hundial said. “I look forward to seeing what they have to say.”

A typical Mountie will spend six months at depot in Regina. Followed by field training, it’s roughly a year before a rookie officer will hit the streets.

Asked if he thinks there’s enough time between now and the middle of 2020 to properly screen and train new police officers for the job, Hundial replied, “From the policing report, as I understood it, the standards are lower than the RCMP, first of all.”

READ ALSO: Surrey mayor slams ‘lack of progress’ on new police force in wake of fatal shooting

READ ALSO: Politicizing Surrey police transition ‘doesn’t help,’ Wally Oppal says

READ ALSO: First look at Surrey’s policing transition report

At Surrey council’s inaugural meeting on Nov. 5th, 2018 it served notice to the provincial and federal governments it is ending its contract with the RCMP – which has policed these parts since May 1, 1951 – to set up its own force. The city’s 189-page proposed transition plan, revealed in June 2019, states the the new force will “go live” on April 1, 2021 at an operating cost of $192.5 million for that year.

The plan includes five “milestones” that address staffing needs. They indicate the “foundations and recruiting process” would be 19-21 months prior to the transition date, with training, policies and equipment to be dealt with 12-18 months prior, recruiting and training “progress” seven to 11 months prior to the transition date, and management and emergency planning two to six months prior.

The report sets a goal of “being ready to train hundreds of officers in the month prior to the transition date.” It also states that “it is expected that approximately 100 Surrey RCMP investigators will need to remain embedded in Surrey PD to finish investigations that began prior to the transition date.”

Wally Oppal, a former B.C. attorney general, is heading the provincial team tasked with overseeing the transition from the Surrey RCMP to a new city force after the NDP government gave the city approval to establish its own police force in August.

Oppal re-affirmed in an interview with the Now-Leader, published Oct. 1, 2019 that the new police force is set to launch in the spring of 2021.

“Everybody agreed on that,” Oppal said. “So we’re aiming for that and I see no reason why we can’t accomplish that.”

– with file by Amy Reid



tom.zytaruk@surreynowleader.com

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Tom on Twitter

Just Posted

Surrey ‘foam-free Vaisakhi’ initiative inspires ‘Sweet Takeaways’ business

KPU students launch business selling sugarcane takeout containers as alternative to foam, single-use items

Rainbow benches installed outside Delta rec centres

The benches are among several initiatives adopted in July aimed at promoting diversity and inclusion

Driver escaped uninjured as car burst into flames on Nordel Way

It happened at about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in North Delta, just west of Scott Road

Surrey RCMP say three people deported in connection to brawl caught on video

Police say they have been ‘actively engaged’ in the issue of youth fights in Newton since March

Christmas events happening around Cloverdale and Langley

Christmas community calendar highlights holiday events

VIDEO: Ron MacLean says he doesn’t believe former co-host Don Cherry is racist

Sportsnet fired Cherry on Nov. 11, two days after controversial on-air comments during ‘Coach’s Corner’

No turn signals, double-parking among top concerns for B.C. drivers: poll

Two-thirds of B.C. drivers said that not using turn signals was their biggest pet peeve

Man accused in fatal Shuswap church shooting also charged with arson

Parmenter family home badly damaged by fire a month before killing

PHOTOS: Patients pelt doctors with snowballs, all for BC Children’s Hospital

The snowball fight was to raise funds for the annual Snowball Fight for Kids Campaign

Union to prepare for picket lines, announce new measures in transit strike escalation

Unifor said the move comes after a ‘failure by the employer to make new offers at the bargaining table’

Workers union calls strike vote in SkyTrain labour dispute

Mediated talks are scheduled to begin Nov. 28

‘Our culture is not a religion,’ Indigenous educator tells B.C. Supreme Court in case of smudging at school

Mother also gave evidence Tuesday in Nanaimo courtroom, case continues Wednesday

B.C. man who killed Belgian tourist near Boston Bar gets life in prison, no parole until 2042

Sean McKenzie pleaded guilty to second-degree murder of 28-year-old Amelie Christelle Sakkalis

Trudeau to take sober approach to unveiling new cabinet for minority mandate

Liberals survived a bruising campaign that diminished Trudeau’s stature as a champion of diversity

Most Read