The North Bay Police Services Board has approved the 2022 operating budget with a 4.47 percent increase.
Board Chair Dennis O’Connor says they went back and forth working on the fiscal plan for months.
“The minimum we could decrease to is 4.47 (percent) of our budget,” he says. “(There’s) a lot of increases this year as everybody knows we just finished a collective agreement with our association, a four-year agreement.”
Chief Scott Tod says one of the challenges is they’re no longer receiving money from Callander as they no longer provide service to that community.
He says they maintained the amount of patrol time as an expense in the budget.
Tod also says they’re adding some new positions.
“We’ll be hiring a wellness coordinator this year, we’ll be hiring a person to look after quality control, planning and projects within the police service,” he says. “A number of other employees will be hired to support our digital evidence management project within the police service this year and a large allocation of money is also made to employee wellness.”
Tod says employee wellness is a critical issue for police services across Ontario and thanked the board for recognizing the need to provide a higher quality of service to their employees.
The budget received unanimous support.