Referendum on policing in Surrey needed, mayoral candidate Gill says

City staff to be asked to make plans for third-party review of Surrey’s policing options

Tom Gill wants to know if Surrey residents think the city has outgrown policing by the RCMP.

The Surrey First mayoral candidate is pitching the idea for a municipal referendum on whether Surrey should have its own police department.

The referendum would be held sometime in 2019, after the Oct. 20 civic election this fall.

At Monday’s council meeting, Gill said he plans to introduce a motion at next week’s council meeting directing city staff to make plans for a third-party review of Surrey’s policing options, including bringing back a city police force.

The review would include “extensive public consultation and input, followed by a special municipal referendum on a Surrey police department in 2019,” according to a release.

•RELATED STORY: Surrey’s political hopefuls agree – change in RCMP policing model is needed.

Surrey is home to the largest RCMP detachment in Canada, with close to 835 officers employed here.

“It’s time to ask our residents what they think of having a Surrey police department, one with deep roots in the community, and one that reports completely to the people of Surrey, instead of RCMP headquarters in Ottawa,” Gill stated.

“Frankly, I think we need to ask ourselves if we’ve outgrown the RCMP.”

In 1950, Surrey council voted to hand over policing duties from the Surrey Municipal Police Department to the RCMP. Fifteen RCMP constables began patrolling the city in May of the following year.

Just Posted

Surrey Community Leader Awards winners revealed

The 16th CLA awards, presented by the Now-Leader, recognized Surrey’s un-sung heroes

COMMUTER ALERT: Serious pedestrian crash closes Pacific Highway

Traffic along 176th Street, 4th to 8th Avenue, is blocked while Mounties continue to investigate.

MPs meet with Surrey council to discuss RCMP, LRT

Federal government to have quarterly meetings with Surrey

Hogg curious if a new recreation centre is needed in Grandview Heights

South Surrey-White Rock MP to host a Town Hall Meeting tonight

Surrey building that has gathered dust for 20 years is for sale again, with bids sought

Potential sale of the long-vacant 104 Avenue Centre is good news, Surrey Board of Trade CEO says

People flocking to Vancouver Island city to see hundreds of sea lions

Each year the combination of Steller and California sea lions take over Cowichan Bay

Protesters confront Environment Minister in B.C.

Protesters wanting more for killer whales confront Catherine McKenna

Humans reshaping evolutionary history of species around the globe: paper

University of British Columbia researcher had the paper published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society

Toronto ‘carding’ activist Desmond Cole stopped by police in Vancouver

Cole says his experience reveals what daily life is like for black and Indigenous residents

Tubing, skating, light display part of new winter festival in Vancouver

Set to open Nov. 23, the six-week festival will take over Vancouver’s Concord Pacific Centre

Commercial trucks banned from left lane of Coquihalla

B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation has introduced a new program that hopes to prevent accidents and closures on the Coquihalla Highway.

B.C. on track to record same number of overdose deaths as last year

128 people died of overdoses in September, bringing the total to more than 1,100 so far in 2018

B.C. firefighters rescue horse stuck in mud

‘It happens more often than you’d think,’ says deputy chief

Regulatory confusion over ‘toxic’ stink near Abbotsford school

Officials sniffing out which regulators responsible for enforcing compliance at neighbouring property

Most Read