It’s good that Hamilton Police Services are finally getting that new forensic building. The current facility built before the widespread use of DNA evidence was clearly inadequate. So good. What is not so good is some of the financial machinations that helped finance the project. First there is the $1.5 million dollar windfall Hamilton earned from policing the Pan Am games. The city submitted a bill for $2.9 Million to the province while incurring expenses of only $1.4 million. Contract language stipulated that municipalities were supposed to be only compensated for actual expenses, and that was the basis on which other Pan Am municipalities were compensated; but the Province didn’t seem to mind as it cut the cheques. They either didn’t know or didn’t want to know. Then there is the issue of the operating budget surpluses the Police ran up in 2014 and 2015 totalling over $3 Million. At the time of their presentation these budgets were described as bare – bones. It calls into question the credibility of future budgets that will be brought forward by the Police Services. Hopefully the Police Services Board and city council will be a little more…forensic…when the next police budget rolls around.
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