Bylaw officers to get more power

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February 3, 2015 9:02 AM

Lloydminster bylaw officers will now be granted greater authority.

After some discussion, Lloydminster city council agreed to authorize city bylaw officers to transition into community peace officers during their biweekly meeting on Jan. 26. The upgrade costs a one-time fee of $30,000 for new uniforms and to mark vehicles to ensure that they meet provincial standards, as well as administrative fees.

“It’s a pretty standard move,” said City of Lloydminster public safety general manager Doug Rodwell regarding the change.

In his report to city council, Rodwell stated that almost all communities in Alberta and Saskatchewan use a hybrid bylaw/peace officer system to enforce bylaws and some provincial statutes.

Peace officers are able to respond to situations that are beyond the authority of bylaw officers. In the past, these tasks were left to the RCMP. Now that bylaw officers will be granted that power, RCMP resources can be used elsewhere. An example of this is dogs trapped in vehicles.

“Bylaw officers will now be able to deal with those issues,” Rodwell said. “Currently, they require an RCMP officer to come down. So, part of our main plan is to ensure that we deal with these issues at a lower level so we can ensure that our RCMP constables are dealing with the more significant issues in the community.”

Some of the laws that bylaw officers will have authority under are the Dangerous Dogs Act, the Animal Protection Act and the Traffic Safety Act.

“Currently there is some time lag dealing with those issues,” Rodwell said. “This will allow them to deal with those issues immediately.”

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