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More than $14 million spent on trucker convoy protests: Ottawa Police Services Board

The board projects the costs have totalled roughly $785,000 per day, but will likely be much higher.
Police convoy

As the "Freedom Convoy" protests reach its third week of occupation, the Ottawa Police Services Board estimates that police and the municipality have spent more than $14 million in recorded costs to mitigate the crisis.

The board's chief administrative officer, Blair Dunker, said in a special meeting on Tuesday, February 15 that those costs include the current recorded costs for the OPS.

It also includes the forecasted costs for the Ontario Provincial Police, the municipality and the OPS' entire costs.

Dunker said that equates to around $785,000 in costs per day.

"We're certainly tracking everything we're spending related to this occupation," she said. "We expect invoices from the OPP and the municipality, and we will sort out the cost recovery mechanisms as we move along because we're in pretty early days of this from a financial recovery perspective."

"We believe that we won't receive invoices from the RCMP."

The more than $14 million price tag is what was tallied as of Monday, February 14, but the actual costs will likely be much higher.

"These are recorded costs, so not all overtime, for example, would be yet recorded and other items would be trickling in," Dunker said.

Moreover, as more officers join in helping end the trucker convoy protests, Dunker said those costs will rise.

She said the board will receive a financial update in March or April with more definite numbers.

Following former chief Peter Sloly's resignation on Tuesday afternoon, interim police chief Steve Bell said he's "confident" the Ottawa Police Service has reached a "turning point" in ending the trucker convoy protests.

The OPS announced the creation of an "integrated command centre" to help police respond to the crisis.

In 2022, the OPS will work with a budget of $346.5 million, an increase of $11.5 million or two per cent over last year’s numbers.

Chris Stoodley

About the Author: Chris Stoodley

Chris was born and raised in Halifax. After graduating from the journalism program at King's, he started as CityNews Halifax's weekend editor.
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