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Durham’s cost of policing among lowest in all of Ontario

By Chris Jones/The Oshawa Express

The cost of per capita policing for Durham Region is amongst the lowest of similar sized services around Ontario.

Durham Regional Police Services compares its cost of policing to municipalities such as Hamilton, Niagara, Peel, Toronto, Waterloo and York.

The staff report to the region’s police services board notes measures considered in assessing policing costs include cost per capita, cost per police members (both uniformed and civilians), and the cost per police officer.

Durham ranked the third lowest of those measured in 2017, with the operating cost per capita being $286.

The only two measuring lower are York at $274 and Halton at $240.

The region’s cost per capita is seven per cent lower than the average of other comparable police services in the province.

The increase in cost per capita between 2013 and 2017 for Durham is $19, which represents the median position between the lowest growth, Halton, which decreased by $10, and the highest, Hamilton, which increased $42.

DRPS Chief Paul Martin said the report shows, “the residents of Durham Region get good value for their money.”

DRPS Director of Business Services Giles le Riche, believes the trend over the past few years is that costs have remained stable.

“Many of the police services that we compare ourselves to have no had a lot of growth in staffing and that’s the primary driver of the overall cost,” said le Riche.

Durham’s operating cost per police member in 2017 was $156,849, the third highest of the comparators.

2017’s numbers represent a 3.4 per cent increase over 2016. The region is also 3.6 per cent higher than the average of the comparator group, which is $151,631.

Niagara was second highest at $158,886, and Waterloo was the highest at $161,885.

Durham’s operating cost per police officer in 2017 came out to $223,658, which is the fifth lowest of the comparator group.

The results for 2017 are four per cent higher than the comparator group average result.