Number of police calls down this year

FORT FRANCES—OPP detachment commander Insp. Dave Lucas delivered a quarterly activity report to town council Monday night, with numbers indicating there’s been fewer calls to police compared to the same point last year.
For the period ending June 30, there have been 1,740 calls for service, compared to 1,889 in 2005, noted Insp. Lucas.
While the reason for the nearly 150 fewer calls can’t be attributed to any one factor, Insp. Lucas said it’s definitely “good news.”
When it comes to enforcement, the numbers show some areas have seen more charges laid so far this year while others have seen fewer.
A total of 144 Criminal Code charges had been laid as of June 30, compared to 192 at that point last year, while only six charges were laid under the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act—eight less than in 2005.
A total of 174 parking tickets were issued as of June 30, compared to 162 at this time last year, while $8,183.40 in revenue was brought in for the town (compared to $12,957 in 2005).
As well, 255 Highway Traffic Act charges were laid, compared to 353 in 2005. Under the Liquor Licence Act, 99 violations were reported so far, compared to 82 at this time last year.
Eleven charges were laid under the Compulsory Vehicle Insurance Act, compared to eight at this point in 2005. And 13 charges under other provincial statutes were laid as of June 30, compared to 11 at this time last year.
Finally, just two charges were laid for municipal bylaw violations, compared to seven by the same point in 2005.
The local OPP provided 19,029.72 hours of policing service as of June 30, in addition to 976.25 overtime hours. This is up from last year’s total at this point, which was 15,768.77 hours with 1,138.66 hours of overtime.
Insp. Lucas noted the district detachment (including officers here as well as in Emo, Rainy River, and Atikokan) has a full complement of staff, including 55 constables, two sergeants, two cadets, and one detachment commander.
Several staffing changes have taken place in the first half of 2006. Cadet Jason Sobkowicz has been promoted to probationary constable while probationary constable Clarence Pierce is new to the force here.
Tyler Coyle is a new cadet on the force while S/Sgt. Larry Indian has moved over to be commanding officer of the south division of the Treaty 3 Police, based out of Couchiching.
The district also has a canine officer in Cst. Dan Bailey, as well as a full-time property crimes officer in Det. Cst. Clint Barton.
And Sgt. Dave Saunders, in addition to his regular duties, is now serving as the detachment’s traffic, marine, and motorized snow vehicle manager.
Also at Monday night’s meeting, council:
•heard a report from Dan McCormick, health services manager with the Rainy River District Social Services Administration Board, on a proposed helipad for air ambulance services here;
•approved an application for tax adjustment at 1000 Colonization Rd. W. (the reason for the adjustment was the house on this property was demolished);
•received activity reports from the Operations and Facilities and Planning and Development executive committee chairpersons (Coun. Neil Kabel and Roy Avis, respectively);
•approved a break-open ticket licence application from Friends of Little League at Sparky’s Confectionery from Sept. 12, 2006-March 12, 2007;
•agreed to a request from the Recycling Council of Ontario to proclaim Oct. 16-22 as “Waste Reduction Week” in the Town of Fort Frances;
•referred a request from Robert Moore School for assistance with the installation of new playground equipment to the Operations and Facilities executive committee for its recommendation;
•approved requests from the Royal Canadian Legion Br. #29 to proclaim Sept. 17-23 as “Legion Week” and Nov. 5-11 as “Poppy Week” in the Town of Fort Frances;
•approved a joint request from Canadian Union of Public Employees (Ontario Division) and the Ontario Coalition for better Child Care to proclaim Oct. 25 as “Child Care Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day” in the Town of Fort Frances; and
•passed a bylaw to approve contracts for supply and delivery of certain granular materials to Tom Veert Contracting Ltd. in 2006, 2007, and 2008 and George Armstrong Co. Ltd. in 2006.
(Fort Frances Daily Bulletin)