City councillors voted to endorse the establishment of a facility in Port Alberni that would provide specialized tactical training to police and military personnel.
The facility would be operated by the Marine International Safety and Security Team, a private security consulting and training firm. Its focus is primarily maritime protection and its services include risk assessment, counter piracy, port and ship security training and marine special operations training.
MISST is is world wide organization with offices in Europe, North and South America, and the Middle East.
MISST’s Canadian representative is Port Alberni resident Bryce Casavant, whose military background includes a combat tour in Afghanistan and extensive military and anti-terrorism training over a 10 year period.
The organization wants to use local firing ranges, Alberni Canal and Broken Group of Islands to conduct specialized training to national and international police and military agencies.
Training will be four weeks in length on average, and include courses on basic and advanced firearms; specialized diving including downed airliner and ship recovery; land and marine navigation; and advanced special operations training.
Casavant has already liaised with the necessary RCMP and city officials about the initiative. And cursory discussions have been held with First Nations and private land owners about using their properties.
If the initiative gets off the ground in Alberni then plans are in the works to host an annual law enforcement and military training conference here in 2014.