Extra boots on ground
Charlottetown Police Services will have an increased presence this summer
There will be a heavier police presence in Charlottetown this summer.
Charlottetown Police Services is in the process of adding cadets from the Atlantic Police Academy as well as other experienced officers.
Police Chief Paul Smith told city council that they’re looking at an additional 16 officers on patrol but those numbers haven’t been finalized yet. That extra help also serves to cushion the loss of full-time officers to summer vacation.
As of recently, it looked like six cadets from the academy and nine constables.
It will cost city taxpayers in the ballpark of $140,000 to bring in the extra bodies. That number could reach $155,000 if civilian staff have to be brought in to fill vacancies caused by summer vacation.
Smith said the city force had 21 summer hires last year.
“Those are actual cadets that will be doing on-the-job training with us,’’ said Deputy Police Chief Gary McGuigan.
Each cadet will be paired with an experienced officer. It will allow the force to step up patrols, both in vehicles and on foot and it could mean more bicycle patrols.
Bob Doiron and Terry MacLeod, city councillors who represent the Sherwood and Parkdale neighbourhoods respectively, don’t want to see all the attention go to the downtown area.
“There are a number of residents concerned about speeding in the area,’’ Doiron said. “Motorists will cut through side streets like Fairview, Centennial and Harley to try and avoid the (traffic) lights.’’
MacLeod echoed those concerns.
“Speeding is a big issue,’’ MacLeod said.
“Parkdale has become quite a cut-through area. Right from Esher Street out to St. Pius people are complaining about the speeding.’’
Other concerns include loud motorcycles and heavy truck traffic not following the designated route.
Coun. Jason Coady, chairman of the protective services committee, said police are meeting with mechanics around the city to remind them of the noise bylaws. Highway safety officers with the province will also be keeping an eye, and their ears, out.
“In terms of speeding through Sherwood and Parkdale, when the (protective services) committee meets that will be on the agenda,’’ Coady said. “We’ll try to come up with some sort of strategy.’’