Police board approves zero per cent budget increase
Published Monday, December 10, 2012 9:27PM EST
Last Updated Monday, December 10, 2012 10:23PM EST
Despite a request from the city’s top cop, the Toronto Police Services Board voted unanimously in favour of zero per cent increase to the police budget for 2013 on Monday night.
Police Chief Bill Blair had sought a two per cent budget increase, which equates to $19.1 million over the 2012 budget.
“There won’t be any hiring in 2013,” Blair said in media scrum following the vote. “The reality of that is by the end of the year, we will be down 326 officers below our authorized strength.”
By the summer of 2014, the city will down 425 officers, Blair added.
“There’s obviously an impact,” he said regarding the decision. “If you have fewer police officers to deliver a service, there’s obviously an impact. But we will do everything we can to minimize that impact.”
Blair had previously warned that a zero per cent budget increase would involve “significant staffing reductions.”
Others, however, say that next year’s budget will not mean any layoffs.
“What we’ve been able to demonstrate today, [is] that this board is able to achieve a zero increase in terms of the 2013 budget and no layoff with respect to police officers,” Coun. Michael Thompson said.
Thompson added that 80 new officers were being added to the force.