A budget surplus seems out of place for a department that has a hard time maintaining minimum staffing levels, but such is the case for the RCMP in Alberni.
The RCMP is projecting a $370,801 budget surplus this year, and a accumulated surplus of $2.2 million since 2006. This is set against the backdrop of a $5.7 million budget this year, the department’s submission to council notes.
The RCMP contract and administration categories show nominal three- and two-per cent increases.
A reserve account set up in 2011 has $300,000 in it.
The surplus was recommended to be added to this account and used for major investigations and the potential addition of a 34th position to the 33-member detachment complement.
The additional position could be slated for the creation of a domestic violence coordinator.
The department is under considerable human resource pressures, acting detachment commander Sgt. Kevin Murray wrote in his report. Three members are currently off duty sick. There are also five vacancies anticipated.
Homicide and home invasions require specialized resources the local department doesn’t have, creating additional budget pressures.