Council looking to see if larger communities can provide services to smaller ones
© Diane Crocker
Massey Drive Coun. Holly Walsh talks about regional policing at the Saturday, Feb. 22, 2014 Great Humber Joint Council Meeting at Corner Brook City Hall.
The Great Humber Joint Council is looking into the concept of regional policing.
Members Holly Walsh and Penny Piercey, councillors with the Town of Massey Drive, have been tasked with finding out the policing needs of member communities. The plan is to take those findings to the City of Corner Brook and the Town of Deer Lake to see if those larger communities, which have municipal enforcement personnel, might be able to help in meeting those needs.
Walsh provided an update on their progress during Saturday’s Great Humber Joint Council meeting at Corner Brook City Hall.
Walsh said an email has been sent out to all communities and once those responses are in, she and Piercey will compile a list of needs.
After the meeting Walsh said once the information is compiled it will be brought to the next meeting of the council.
“And the Town of Deer Lake and the City of Corner Brook will take it back to their respective departments and see if they have services that we could cost share in some way,” she said.
“Nobody is looking for something for nothing. We know that we will have to pay.”
Walsh and Piercey said the types of concerns Massey Drive has include speeding, illegal parking, patrols of walking trails and playgrounds and vandalism.
“That’s our concerns,” said Walsh. “But I have a feeling that some of the smaller communities, and probably more remote ones, will probably have more concerns than we have.”
Piercey added that’s why they’ve sent the emails to ask for input.
“To get their own opinion of what’s needed,” she said.
Walsh said the need for help with policing comes from a realization that the Royal Canadian Mounted Police can’t do it all. She said there is only a certain amount of money to go around and the RCMP has also experienced cuts to services and staffing.
“They do what they can for us, but they can’t be everywhere, they don’t have the staff,” she said. “So, as a community we are responsible for ensuring the safety of our residents and their properties.”
Piercey noted that policing can be an issue for staff in smaller communities.
“Ninety per cent of residents don’t want to go out and tell somebody they’re doing something wrong,” she said.
Walsh added for staff it has to do with a fear of retribution that they’ll get from their neighbours.
“It’s already happened in our town,” said Piercey. “So, we’re just trying to eliminate all that. We’re trying to get someone to come in and take care of that for us.”