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Fewer tickets and fines means a drop in BPS revenues

By: Harry Callaghan
Posted: June 5, 2020 12:05

The on-going pandemic has kept vehicles off the streets as people work from home

Image: Brandon Police Chief Wayne Balcaen - Government of Manitoba

Fewer people driving to work during the pandemic has meant fewer vehicles on the streets, and for police departments in Manitoba, that's translated to a decrease in revenues. 

Brandon police chief Wayne Balcaen says his department has also issued fewer tickets "and that is one area that we noted that we do have a downturn in revenue, and it is very much so the fact that people are working from home, people are not travelling as much on the streets, and also for our parking ticket revenue, there are not that many people parking in the downtown areas."

Balcaen says the revenue drop is not overly significant, but that could change the longer the pandemic continues. He says if cuts have to be made, areas like training or travel would be considered - officers would not be laid off.

Next Thursday, a peaceful anti-racism walk is planned for Brandon. The walk is in solidarity with recent demonstrations in the U-S in protest of police violence against African Americans, and with similar walks being held in Canada. The protests have led to greater scrunity of how police departments use force. 

Police chief Wayne Balcaen says his department examines their policies annually. "We have 40,000 or better calls for service and very limited use of force incidents here in the city, so it'll be more of a review to make sure what we're doing adequately serves our citizens."

Balcaen says when comparing the number of calls to the number of complaints, he's pleased with how his officers are performing.

He also says Brandon Police are aware of next week's planned protest walks and rallies, but does not anticipate any problems arising. "Brandon has always been very respectful, they always label them as peaceful marches, so I'm certainly not expecting any sorts of incidences we're seeing in other jurisdictions."

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