With an ongoing SIU investigation pertaining to an incident at Pete Pettersen Park, coupled with last weekend’s second degree murder charge, both Midland Police Services Board and town council should monitor costs related to both probes.
No council/police service board budgets ever puts in a huge reserve to cover unexpected issues as above. But one expects neither probe will be free or covered by current municipal budget. It still appears town fathers favour turning over policing to the OPP since com centre operators now are located in Owen Sound as a tax saving measure.
More and more municipalities are discovering turning policing over to the OPP is not what they bargained for since some towns and cities had to pay for new police stations to be built while other municipalities were stung with increased cost since some detachments were patrolling wind turbine farms in nearby rural areas.
The tragic death of a father of two, we all mourn and rightly so. The courts will deal with the flip side of this matter and again, rightly so. Council and the police services board must keep its eye on the ball and that is all our citizens desire. The hypothetical question is would we save any money if these two incidents had happened while we were policed by the OPP? Or, would they be handing us an invoice at the end to cover the costs that they had not forecasted either? I suspect so as nothing is free. We will pay the police costs for criminal investigations no matter whose patch they wear on their shoulders. That is just a fact of life and something to consider when the final tally is made of how much this murder investigation will cost us all, beyond the ultimate price paid by the victim and his family.