CARSTAIRS - Mayor Lance Colby says he is pleased the premier has instructed her minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services Mike Ellis to work with local municipalities regarding community policing.
“The policing change is a good thing, allowing the municipalities to decide who they want is a good idea,” said the Carstairs mayor, who is a former Calgary police officer. “I hope the government will still provide funding so municipalities can research the best options for their community.
“The federal government needs to give the provinces that they contract to the heads-up as to when and if they are going to be strictly a federal police force. This would let the province and the municipalities to better plan how to move forward with the issue of policing.
“This rumour of the feds getting out of contract policing has been going on for years, so they need to decide sooner or later.”
In her new mandate letter to the minister of Public Safety and Emergency Services, premier Smith said initiatives she expects the department to deliver includes, “Continuing to work with local communities to support them with the community policing options they believe will best serve their populations.”
In her mandate letter to Ellis and in her mandate letter to Minister of Justice Mickey Amery, Smith makes no mention of the possibility of creating a provincial police service.
Former premier Jason Kenney had said the province was examining the possibility of creating a provincial service.
In her mandate letter to Ellis, Smith also touched on election-related legislation.
Specifically, she called on the department to review the Election Act, the Local Authorities Election Act, the Election Finance and Contributions Disclosure Act.
She said Ellis should make “recommendations that ensure election results are publicly available on a more timely basis one voting day to strengthen public trust in and the integrity of our provincial and municipal elections, including improving the investigation and enforcement of election rules before and during election periods.”