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Handling of policing report ‘appalling’

One Halifax regional councillor thinks the chair of the HRM’s Board ofPolice Commissioners should step down over his handling of a reportbeing presented to council today.

One Halifax regional councillor thinks the chair of the HRM’s Board of Police Commissioners should step down over his handling of a report being presented to council today.

South End Coun. Sue Uteck referred to the handling of the report by commission chair Coun. Russell Walker as “appalling.” According to the CBC, the report recommends Halifax Regional Police take over all policing duties in HRM.

Uteck also expresses disappointment in Walker’s decision to reportedly call HRP and the RCMP only 10 minutes before council begins hearing the recommendations of the report today. The phone calls are expected to inform both forces of the report’s complete findings.

“For a chair of a police commission to say that both sides will get a call 10 minutes beforehand, he should be resigning,” Uteck said. “I have no faith right now in senior management.”

Walker refused to comment when contacted by Metro yesterday.

Currently, HRP services the urban core of Halifax and Sambro Loop, while the RCMP and its 178 officers service Sackville, Cole Harbour and other outlying areas. But Uteck wants an internal audit of both forces prior to any decision making process.

“I’m doubting the efficiencies in our own organization,” Uteck said. “I want to see an audit of our HRP first. Both forces should be audited for efficiencies.”

Uteck is not the only councillor questioning the process. Waverley-Fall River-Beaver Bank Coun. Barry Dalrymple, who spent 33 years as a member of the RCMP, said he is “disgusted” with how quickly council is expected to make a decision on the issue.

Dalrymple is calling for public meetings.

“What absolutely disgusts me more than anything about this process ... is the way it’s trying to be rammed through,” he said. “We were told a week ago, ‘clear your calendars for Monday and Tuesday for 16-18 hours of secret meetings,’ to discuss an issue like this ... it’s absolutely inexcusable.”

 
 
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