Victoria police overtime bills for July 1 causing hiring delays

Canada Day incurs largest overtime costs at department

New Victoria police officers may not be immediately hired to offset overtime costs to police Canada Day in downtown Victoria.

The trend in the last two years has been to sometimes delay hiring for several months, allowing the department to keep to its allotted $2-million annual overtime budget.

“That’s one way of creating funds if you need them elsewhere,” said Victoria Police Department controller Scott Seivewright. “That’s one of our only flexibilities.”

With just days to go before tens of thousands of people flood into the downtown to celebrate Canada Day, Victoria police are winding up almost a year of preparation for their busiest day and most expensive overtime shift.

After racking up $128,000 in overtime costs last July 1, the department unsuccessfully asked for a $60,000 increase to its $40,000 Canada Day overtime budget. In 2010, the overtime bill was $63,000, over budget by $23,000.

Uniformed members, such as patrol officers, are paid time-and-a-half if they work the statutory holiday. The majority of VicPD officers from other units, who are called in specially to work the Canada Day shift, are paid double time.

If this year’s Canada Day overtime budget goes over by $60,000, the department may consider delaying the hiring of two replacement officers by four months, equivalent to about $60,000.

“But, again, we don’t have those officers working for those four months,” Seivewright said of the drawbacks, reason why the department asked for more money.

The police department currently has a full roster of 243 officers.

The department is deploying about the same number of officers to police Canada Day this year as it did in 2011, though police wouldn’t say how many. Outlying services, such as the Oak Bay Police Department, will provide additional uniformed support at no cost to Victoria.

“The police chief and deputy chiefs ensure that we have adequate resources (on duty), and if we need to reallocate budgets to make that happen then that’s what we do,” Seivewright said.

emccracken@vicnews.com

Just Posted

Challengers topple incumbents in several South Island races

2018 civic election ushers in new faces across the CRD

Victoria and Saanich voters elect to move ahead with amalgamation talks

Victoria and Saanich voters have chosen to move ahead with exploring amalgamation… Continue reading

Prank pizzas delivered to Victoria Mayor Lisa Helps’ campaign celebration

The fake orders happened throughout Helps’ campaign

Saanich passenger caught smoking weed in a car issued $230 fine

Saanich police did a field sobriety test on the driver and deemed it safe for him to drive

VIDEO: Tent city moves to Woodwynn Farm, arrests made

The group is asking the government to provide housing for 60 tent city members

WATCH: Twelve Angry Jurors puts a new spin on an old tale

Canadian College of Performing Arts opens season with reworked version of Reginald Rose teleplay

2018 municipal election: Few surprises on Vancouver Island

16 incumbent mayors will continue in their positions for four more years

Crime Stoppers most wanted for Greater Victoria for Oct. 19

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Do you support amalgamation for communities in the Capital Region?

Residents in Victoria and Saanich will be voting on Oct. 20 on… Continue reading

MLA to become Nanaimo’s next mayor, could weaken NDP’s grasp on power

Leonard Krog’s win will trigger a byelection when he gives up his provincial seat

Horvat nets OT winner as Canucks beat Bruins 2-1

Young Vancouver star had spirited scrap earlier in contest

Team Canada gold medal winners for first time in world curling championship

Team Canada earned gold in Kelowna at the 2018 Winn Rentals World Mixed Curling Championship

Payette invites critics to ‘come and spend a few days’ with her

Governor General Julie Payette made her first official to B.C. back in March

More pot stores expected in B.C. in coming ‘weeks and months’: attorney general

Attorney General David Eby and Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth visited the new BC Cannabis Store in the province’s Interior

Most Read