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Manager appointed as Surrey, B.C. works to remove RCMP, launch municipal force

SURREY, B.C. — The City of Surrey, British Columbia has appointed a manager to oversee a planned transition to a municipal police force and the closure of its RCMP detachment.


November 14, 2018
By The Canadian Press

A news release from the city says Terry Waterhouse has been appointed as the general manager of policing transition.

He is the former general manager of public safety for Surrey.

Mayor Doug McCallum says Waterhouse will work with government, the RCMP and other affected organizations to ensure a smooth and quick transition.

At the first city council meeting after his election, McCallum and Surrey’s eight councillors voted unanimously to begin working toward development of a municipal police force and termination of the city’s RCMP contract.

Waterhouse says he is moving quickly to put a team together to act on that initiative.

“The task at hand is of utmost importance to the residents of Surrey and it is incumbent on us to have an orderly evolution of policing services for the city,” Waterhouse said in the release.

After his election, McCallum said he believes the switch to municipal policing could be accomplished within the next two years at a cost of about $120 million, but experts have warned the task could be daunting and costly

Rob Gordon, a criminology professor with Simon Fraser University said many people will be watching to see if the switch can be cost effective.

If Surrey drops the RCMP detachment, which is the largest in Canada, the force has said it would mark the first transition since 2000 when Cape Breton, N.S., switched to a municipal force.

Abbotsford, B.C., dropped the Mounties in 1995, when it amalgamated with Matsqui and formed the Abbotsford Police Department.

News from © Canadian Press Enterprises Inc., 2018