Port Alberni taxpayers pay the most in the province for policing, yet we have one of the highest crime rates.
Mayor Mike Ruttan says the city needs help from other levels of government to put more money towards police resources while reducing the burden on city taxpayers.
“We pay an average of $500 per year per taxpayer in Port Alberni for policing,” said Ruttan. “We have one of the highest crime rates in the country and we have one of the lowest average incomes in British Columbia, and that’s a formula for a really challenging situation as a city.”
Ruttan said the city of Port Alberni is just above a federal funding formula population mark of 15,000, which is the reason why Parksville pays only 75% of the cost of their policing, while Port Alberni pays 90%.
He said he’ll be talking to Federal, Provincial, and Regional District governments looking to bringing down the crime rate while also decreasing the $7 million the city pays to police.