Callander’s municipal staff are seeking to extend the policing contract with North Bay Police, however, for their next contract, they are also looking into the OPP as an option.
Councillor Jordy Carr and Mayor Robb Noon plan to meet with the OPP to “determine whether it would be in the Municipality’s best interest” to request a quote for policing services, explained senior municipal director, Ashley Bilodeau, in her report to council.
In March, Callander extended the current contract with North Bay Police, but that contract ends in September.
“An agreement has not yet been reached due to the Police Board not meeting during the summer months,” Bilodeau explained, adding that a “draft contract” with North Bay Police will be presented to council in October.
In preparation, the town has added an additional five per cent to the Municipal policing budget and realizes that they may “see an increase to the contract price” when signing a new agreement.
“The municipality has been receiving fair value for police service,” Bilodeau emphasized, noting that the cost for policing in Callander is roughly $265 per household.
The average policing cost in Ontario is $365 per household, Bilodeau noted in her report.
Town staff reached out to neighbouring communities to see what they were paying for police services. Per household Powassan pays $312, Chisolm $265, South Algonquin $250 and Mattawan pays $305.
East Ferris shells out $263, Mattawa $397, and Temagami pays $259 per household. Overall, the average is $293 per household, and Callander falls under this at $265.
In 2020 Callander was meeting monthly with the North Bay Police, discussing a “made for Callander” policing plan, Bilodeau explained, with the goal of creating another ten-year policing contract.
With this current contract extended, “there is opportunity to revise and/or add language to the contract to assist with the adoption of this mandate.”
As for the OPP, a representative will meet with the municipality in the upcoming months to discuss the billing model “and their approach to policing in various communities.”
If the quote is acceptable, it would take approximately nine months to one year “to finalize a contract, prior to establishing a service level in Callander,” she said.
However, if the contract is not renewed with the North Bay Police, the OPP will “take over immediately” Bilodeau said, to provide policing, and bill the municipality accordingly, “the same as a contracted service with OPP.”
David Briggs, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, BayToday.ca