This CFAX article states that “CREST, the Capital Region’s emergency services radio system is about to be replaced.”
However, this blurb in the CREST Fall 2013 newsletter puts the announcement in a more realistic context: “Over the next few months CREST staff will be consulting with users and shareholders on a plan for replacing existing infrastructure and moving to the use of 700 MHz spectrum. The plan is a roadmap for continuing to make system enhancements that further improve reliability and coverage for the over 2,000 men and women who rely on their CREST radios.”
So this is something that is in the early planning stages. Still, it is good news and I’m glad to hear they are planning to upgrade the system.
This article by Richard Watts is about the Wilkinson Road Jail, aka VIRCC, which turns 100 this month. It is a long article but worth the read. It is interesting to see how the use of the jail has changed over time, and also how security has tightened up in recent decades.
I take my hat off to the correctional officers who work in this prison. I don’t imagine for a second that this is an easy place to work. The executive director of the local branch of the John Howard Society praises some of the wardens and staff at this jail:
Dave Johnson, executive director of the prisoners’ advocacy group the John Howard Society in Victoria credits the various wardens and staff serving at Wilkie.
“We have been so fortunate,” said Johnson, a 20-year veteran of prison work. “They have had some really, really good wardens out at Wilkie.”
He said the institution has also had success with a community advisory committee, which has representatives from the surrounding neighborhood, B.C. Corrections and inmates. And in the midst of cost-cutting, the institution always finds a way to provide programs and assistance to inmates.
Here is another article about the 1978 task force on municipal policing costs. The article is from the Spring 1979 issue of the British Columbia Police Journal. I scanned it from a hard copy of the magazine. You won’t find it anywhere else on the web.
The article outlines a number of “principles” affirmed by the task force, including this one:
Current municipal contributions for police protection place a strain on local taxpayers in municipalities responsible for policing. Furthermore, the proportion of municipal expenditures going toward policing is increasing annually.
Of course, elected officials from 1978 would be shocked by the costs of policing in 2013.
And this one has been debated many times since 1978:
Some municipalities incur greater police costs as a result of special problems which they experience. The Task Force believes these municipalities should receive special assistance.
Regional policing is a hot topic right now in the Capital Regional District. It has also been studied on a number of occasions in the past. This article is from the Autumn 1978 issue of the British Columbia Police Journal. Here is an excerpt:
The major purpose of the project is to examine policing costs in British Columbia, how they are shared among Municipal, Provincial and Federal Governments and then to consider practical cost-sharing alternatives. The terms of reference also require a study of the possibility of regional delivery of policing services and other cost-related issues.
This is a well-written essay by Deputy Chief Ducker. Even if you disagree with police regionalization, it raises some interesting facts and anecdotes that many people throughout the CRD probably did not know about or may not have considered:
It’s no secret to VicPD members that many of the region’s hardcore drug dealers, organized criminals and party crowd live in the outlying areas, which most certainly includes Saanich.
The criminal element of these groups ply their trade on the streets of our downtown core and often retire to the bedroom communities, where not enough attention is paid to them. After 34 years I could fill a police notebook with instances where outlying agencies have either declined outright or simply don’t have the true capacity to deal with serious criminal elements living in their communities, leaving it to VicPD to handle or simply allow the problem to be ignored.