Sept 6 2016 – Kevin Yaworski – WiseUpWinnipeg
“WPS over staffed and inefficient!” That’s the conclusion reached by the Fraser Institute who recently published a sixty-four (64) page study titled, “Police and Crime Rates in Canada – A Comparison of Resources and Outcomes.” The report was authored by Livio Di Matteo, a Professor of Economics at […]
Here is my take on this study and some related facts that I have become aware of as an Advocate for Public Safety and Public Service Accountability for many years.
This study took into account population, crime rates, demographics and more. It found WPS to be the 2nd most overstaffed and inefficient force in Canada behind St.John NB; MB in the top two with Sask for the most officers per 100k population. The numbers show WPS has 300 more officers than it needs. City compensation reports show the average officer makes 100k and some 150k-200k. With salary, OT, pension and benefits that works out to over $42 Million a year for these 300 extra officers and that before training, firearms, vehicles and other costs.
Police forces were starting to cut back and reduce staff to stay in budget but that all changed when Harper’s Conservative government announced it’s tough on crime agenda, legislation, more prisons and federal funding to the provinces for police which many put towards more officers. They did this even though crime going down and we had out of control federal and provincial net debt and interest payments totaling 100’s of Billions.
For decades crime has been falling in Canada but WPS annual reports show serious crime (violent & property) hasn’t in Winnipeg but this Fraser Institute study took this in to account. The author of the study told CJOB that WPS officers maybe doing labor intensive duties that are taking up resources and the reason needed to be investigated. WPS Chief Clunis (allowed to retire with huge pension and severance even though serious crime and spending out of control), Police Board Chair Counc. Scott Gillingham, Mayor Brian Bowman and some of other senior officials at the City and Province have known for years what the reason is and are allowing or ignoring it.
WiseUpWinnipeg and others advocacy groups have repeatedly said it is unacceptable for such a large number of high paid and trained officers be assigned to the traffic unit and worse with a quota. That officers issuing up to 55,000 traffic tickets a year with trend going up as per WPS reports and the vast majority are unfair or illegal due to aggressive targeting of known and even some created traffic engineering deficiencies in proper and safe speed limits, amber times, signage and others. With ACS / Xerox (3rd party for profit photo enforcement and 311 partner of WPS and the City of Winnipeg) doing the same the total is up to 200,000 tickets a year. With up to 37,000 a year or more bring contested in traffic court it is causing a back log of up to two years or more and tickets dismissed for breaching charter 11b (rights to a trial in a reasonable amount of time).
Then Counc. Scott Gillingham, and senior WPS staff say they need enforcement revenue in their budget. The City is listing enforcement in its budgets or as “cost savings” and even “lower than expected and x $ Million more needed”. Clunis and others at WPS falsely claimed they would have to cut staff or services if they didn’t get $xx Millions more again each time the City tried to cut out of control budget increases. Instead Bowman and City Council gave them $x Million more and Gillingham and the Police Board allowed WPS to cut the lower cost Cadets program which is perfect for some Police tasks that do not require high paid, trained and experienced officers. They also let them cut the police body camera program which would better protect the public and police and stop some of the abuses we are seeing.
They allowed OT to be pensionable including for 3rd party contracted security work.
They are allowing high paid and experienced officers near the end of their career to transfer to traffic unit to work long hours including OT to issue tickets to pad their pensions (partly based on your best 5 years).
The crown and WPS not properly investigating officers alledged to have committed fraud and other serious crimes or not disciplined appropriately when warranted.
Evidence including many 1st hand accounts and some transcripts show Provincial Summary Convictions Court (aka traffic court), some Crown office staff including several Attorneys and even some Justices are ignoring rights of the accused or due process. Evidence of lies or misleading statements, ignoring or misinterpreting the HTA, allowing this and even perjury on the record by crown witnesses with no consequences. At to this the Crown plea bargining to reduce fine by half to change plea to guilty or guilty with explanation.
The Province getting 50% of enforcement revenue, the City gets 25% and then WPS gets 25% after paying ACS. These combined are taking up to 70 million a year out of drivers and vehicle owners pockets plus their time and increased license and insurance costs from MPIC after unfair or illegal tickets and demerits applied and the impact this has on them and their families.
With the velocity of money ($1 changes hands about 6 times) this extrapolates to up to $70 Million per year or $ Billions since 2003 when photo enforcement and other abusive enforcement started with amended legislation without due diligence and based on false, inaccurate and incomplete safety improvement stats from ACS / ATS in Washington and sole source contract to ACS. All pushed by WPS Jon Butcher who resigned after contract signed to work for Gatso … (maker of photo enforcement equipment used by ACS) and then on to ACS Western Canada where he helped implement PE elsewhere and even pushed for PE on buses here and elsewhere.
ACS / ATS (previous subsidiary of Lockheed Martin and then acquired by Xerox) has had executives convicted of stock options fraud and charged or convicted of other serious crimes. WPS, CoW and MB expanded the program at least twice even after Wpg Audit Reports and WiseUpWinnipeg repeatedly highlighted serious issues. Even Xerox is now splitting away from them as US Justice Dept and State Justice Departments probes and prosecutions of red light and speed camera company executives and their politician or public official partners in crime. Yet they continue to partner with ACS for Photo Enforcement and 311.
It is overdue to put an end these numerous abuses, make those responsible for allowing or ignoring accountable and help restore the greatness in Winnipeg and Manitoba.
IT IS OVERDUE FOR Winnipeggers and Manitobans TO DEMAND
- An RCMP independent investigation in to the sole source contract with ACS and related.
- FOR TRUE PUBLIC SAFETY TO COME BEFORE $AFETY REVENUE!
- Their taxes, fees, fines be collected and used fairly, legally and efficiently and same for using your valuable public service resources.
For list of contact info for 311, Councillor, MLA, Mayor, Premier and officials they appoint and what tools are available if they ignore visit:
Lets work together to help improve our City and Province and if needed use FIPPA, LERA, Auditors, Ombudsman and more
Also visit http://www.wiseupwinnipeg.com and check the pinned post and links within it and my blog for more information including the much needed changes and reforms and what else you can do.
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