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

Police are looking for witnesses and video footage after a crash on June 18. (Photo courtesy of West Shore RCMP)
West Shore RCMP looking for videos related to Corvette crash

Driver believed to have fled the scene of View Royal crash

The Pat Bay Highway was closed for several hours Monday morning after a drug-impaired driver crashed into two hydro poles. (Black Press Media file photo)
UPDATE: Pat Bay closure caused by drug-impaired driver

Man struck two hydro poles, closing a section of the Pat Bay Monday morning

Environment Canada has issued a special weather statement for Greater Victoria with unusually high temperatures expected Monday and this coming weekend. (Black Press Media file photo)
Greater Victoria’s first week of summer will be a scorcher

Special weather statement issued Monday by Environment Canada

Central Saanich has rejected plans for a pilot project that would allow food trucks in Centennial Park. (Black Press Media file photo)
Central Saanich puts brakes on food truck pilot project

Coun. Carl Jensen questions Central Saanich’s consistency

A rendering shows what the Doral Forest Park development would look like from the southwest. (Rendering via D’AMBROSIO Architecture & Urbanism)
Beaver Lake area project passes next hurdle in Saanich

Council approval for 242-unit parks edge development hinges on meeting of conditions

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

A man makes his way past signage to a mass COVID-19 vaccination centre at the University of Toronto’s Mississauga campus during the COVID-19 pandemic in Mississauga, Ont., on Monday, May 17, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Canadians encouraged to see mRNA shots as interchangeable as more 2nd doses open up

Doctos urge people not to hesitate if offered Moderna after getting Pfizer for their first shot

Chief of Defence Staff Jonathan Vance sits in the front row during a news conference in Ottawa on June 26, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Defence committee rises without report on Vance allegations

Committee had been investigating the government’s handling of complaints against former defence chief

The Coquihalla Lakes washroom is getting upgrades. (Submitted)
Coquihalla to get upgrades to aging washrooms

The Ministry of Transportation is providing $1 million in funding to upgrade 3 rest areas

The Crofton trailer park home where the bodies of two people were found. (Photo by Don Bodger)
Mom still waiting for answers after daughter and her fiance found dead in Crofton

Pair discovered dead in their Crofton home in May identified as Rachel Gardner and Paul Jenkins

By the end of life, the average North American has eaten the weight of a family sedan in sugar. (Pixabay.com)
FITNESS: Living the sweet life without too much sugar

Simple choices can have a major impact on your health

The Sacred Hearts church on PIB land burned Monday morning. (Theresa May Jack/Facebook)
Two churches on First Nation land in South Okanagan burn to the ground

Sacred Hearts church on Penticton Indian Band land was reduced to rubble

Tl’etinqox-lead ceremony at the site of the former St. Joseph’s Mission in Williams Lake, B.C., June 18, 2021. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
‘We are all one people’: Honouring residential school victims and survivors

Love, support and curiousity: Canadians urged to learn about residential schools and their impact

Indigenous rights and climate activists gathered outside Liberty Mutual’s office in Vancouver to pressure the insurance giant to stop covering Trans Mountain. (Photo by Andrew Larigakis)
Activists work to ensure Trans Mountain won’t get insurance

Global campaign urging insurance providers to stay away from Canadian pipeline project

Most Read