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York Regional Police proposing $16M hike on 2022 operating budget

The nearly $377M net expenditure, which has to be approved by regional council, includes the hiring of 27 new employees
Oct. 29, 2021
Elizabeth Keith

Hiring 27 new employees -- including 15 uniformed officers -- is among the additional costs accounting for a $16-million increase in York Regional Police's proposed nearly $377-million net operating budget for 2022.

Overall, salaries and benefits make up the biggest portion of the budget, according to Jeff Channel and Sunita Erry, who presented the 2022 operating and capital budget at the Oct. 27 police services board.

“The percentages really aren’t changing through this budget. Still 86 per cent, that big gold area (on the chart above) around salaries and benefits to pay for 2,377 existing staff, as well as the 27 additional staff requested in this budget,” Channel said.

The net expenditure/tax levy of the operating budget of $376.8-million is up by more than $16 million, or just under five per cent, from the 2021 budget.

The force aims to hire 27 additional staff, 12 of whom will be civilian and 15 uniformed. Along with increases to existing staff compensation, wage-related costs are up by more than $14-million in the 2022 budget.

The remainder of the budget includes administrative and special project costs, debt and interest payments, insurance, and heat, hydro, lease, and repair and maintenance costs.

Included in $1.3-million of operating expenses are the facility costs for the new District 1 headquarters in Newmarket.

While the budget has increased from the previous year, $2 million was trimmed from the initial proposed budget for 2022 as requested by York Region treasurer Laura Mirabella last May.

The proposed $32-million proposed capital budget to the board is about $2 million less that the 2021 capital budget, which was $34.3-million.

About $6 million is being re-budgeted from 2021, largely due to a change in the payment timeline for the construction of the new Newmarket headquarters, and a number of other delayed projects.

In 2022, spending in the capital budget includes more than $11.6-million for vehicles, more than $8.7-million for facilities -- almost half of which is related to the new headquarters in Newmarket, -- $8.5-million for IT and $2.4-million for special equipment.

According to Erry, the 10-year outlook for the capital budget includes expenditures of $214 million between 2022 and 2031.

The police services board accepted the budget, which will proceed to regional council for approval.

“Council is looking forward to your presentation, of course. It’s something that we always look forward to because we recognize the important role you play in keeping our community safe,” said Vaughan Mayor Maurizio Bevilacqua, chair of the police services board.

The presentation to council expected to take place Dec. 9.