The Sooke RCMP gave a verbal update to Council at the October 23 regular Council meeting.
Staff Sergeant Jeffrey McArthur said that the two biggest issues that continue to plague Sooke are alcohol abuse and domestic violence.
They have been doing traffic monitoring for impaired driving, and there has been a spike in roadside suspensions. An eighth Neighbourhood Crime Watch is being set up. Prolific offenders are being closely monitored for breaches.
Staff has an expert with dealing with serious traffic accidents, so that helps traffic get moving somewhat faster. However, S/Sgt McArthur noted, the more serious, the longer the closure.
S/Sgt McArthur noted they were short staffed over the summer, where they had 11 staff and two recruits in training. As a result, there was a lot of overtime. They are now at 17, with one more hire expected over the next two months.
Their case load is essentially the same as it was last year.
On the legalization of marijuana
With the legalization of marijuana just under a year away, Council inquired about the impact that may have on the local RCMP. S/Sgt McArthur didn’t anticipate that would be a problem. Marijuana is already here, he noted. We’re not introducing a drug, what’s changing is the way it is marketed. It will now be following a legal procedure.
He added that driving under the influence will also not add an additional strain, as that too is already happening.
“It’s not going to impact us significantly.”
The Federal government has set the minimum age at 18; the provinces can change that. In the absence of provincial regulation, federal regulations apply.
There is a provincial online survey available for those who want to add their thoughts and concerns. It closes on November 1, 2017.
Edibles will not be dealt with until 2019, as that is a Health Canada issue (food).
Council will submit this report from the Sooke Fire Chief to the Cannabis Legalization and Regulation Secretariat,
through the Ministry of Public Safety and Solicitor General.
Present at the October 23 2017 regular Council meeting were Sooke Mayor Maja Tait and Councillors Brenda Parkinson, Bev Berger, Ebony Logins and Kevin Pearson; Councillors Kerrie Reay and Rick Kasper were absent.
Also from the October 23 2017 Council meeting
- Council expresses discomfort with the usage of the term, “affordable housing”
- Alcohol abuse and domestic violence are crimes to keep an eye on in Sooke
- Controversial licence rescinded, business owner to appeal
- Business blindness needs to stop; request for public apology
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