RCMP cost hammering small towns in Alberta

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Sep 28, 2021
By: Jennifer Henderson, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Source: St. Albert Gazette


The town of Rimbey didn’t have to pay for RCMP services until 2020 and now the cost to have RCMP in the community will result in the equivalent of a 10-per-cent property-tax increase annually, starting in a few years.

With a population of 2,567 — under the 5,000 population limit which excludes them from having to pay for RCMP services — the community has received their policing funds from the province and the federal government.

But in 2020 that all changed, and suddenly the town had to pay around $85,000 in the first year, which will increase to $100,000 next year, and by the end of the five-year plan the town will have to pay $200,000 per year for their policing costs.

Mayor Rick Pankiw said the changes to the policing funding model are deeply impacting small towns like his and the downloading of the costs onto these small communities is causing huge financial burdens for governments that can’t run a deficit.

“I was dumbfounded, to be quite honest with you,” Pankiw said, adding he had no real say in the matter and is just being handed a bill to pay for the service....continued


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