Ottawa Police draft budget forecasts 25 new staff, no big changes in direction or spending

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The Ottawa Police Service wants to hire 25 new uniformed officers and other staff this year, according to a draft budget tabled Wednesday.

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The Police Services Board has already been directed by city council to keep the property tax increase to a maximum of 2.5 per cent, so that is reflected in a draft budget tabled before board members that provides no big changes in direction or spending.

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The police force faces considerable budget pressures, with inflation and crime both on the rise, calls for service increasing and an increase in the scope and scale of protests in Ottawa, including an “unsettling rise in right-wing extremism and large-scale protests,” according to the draft budget.

A 2.5 per cent increase in the tax revenue for police in 2023 amounts to an extra $17 for the average urban homeowner, bringing the total annual bill to pay for police services to $680.

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