Over the past year, the Federal Government has been in negotiations with the National Police Federation (NPF) - the union representing RCMP members, and have recently come to an agreement that could potentially have significant impact to The City’s current and future budgets. The agreement, which becomes effective 90 days after signing on August 6, provides a $20,000 salary increase to regular members and reservists, as well as retroactive pay dating back to 2017.
“We appreciate the hard work that RCMP members do, day in and day out, in service to our city. At issue here, is the absence of any municipal representation at the negotiating table when up to five years of retroactive pay increases were discussed and agreed upon, between the Federal Government and the National Police Federation.” said Mayor Tara Veer. “The Federal Government must be responsible for the negotiations it has conducted. Municipal governments did not have a place at the negotiation table nor do they have the resources to fund the significant financial impact of retroactive pay.”
Today during their regular meeting, Council voted unanimously in favour of two resolutions relating advocacy. The first is to support Alberta Urban Municipalities Association (AUMA) in their advocacy efforts to have the Government of Canada be responsible for the one-time payment of costs associated with retroactive pay for RCMP members. The second supports The City of Red Deer to advocate the Government of Alberta to adjust the Municipal Policing Assistance Grant to reflect the ongoing cost increase to Red Deer.
The one-time expense for retroactive pay for 2017 to 2020 is approximately $5.4 million. The City anticipated an increase since 2017 and set aside $4.3 million. This leaves The City with a $1.1 million shortfall for those years. For 2021, there will be a shortfall of $1.6 million to cover the retroactive pay. The total variance associated with the RCMP retroactive pay, which will come during budget this fall is $2.7 million. The City will also need to account for approximately $690,000 to cover RCMP pay increases starting in the 2022 budget.
“Right now, The City of Red Deer is not in a position to find more than $5 million for retroactive pay in our current approved budget. Over the past few years, The City of Red Deer has set aside funding to lessen the impact of an anticipated police funding increase - but without a voice at the negotiating table, we were not able to pinpoint the exact amount of that increase. It will be difficult to incorporate the additional $690,000 each year into future budgets without impacting property taxes or budgets in other areas,” said Mayor Tara Veer. “We need support from the other orders of government to minimize the direct impact to our citizens, and we are joining our advocacy efforts with AUMA, to pursue a positive outcome in the coming months.”
The City of Red Deer is a member of the AUMA. AUMA represents cities, towns, villages, summer villages and specialized municipalities where more than 85 per cent of Albertans live. They work with municipalities to advocate for solutions to municipal issues. For more information on AUMA, visit their site at www.auma.ca.
For more information, please contact:
The City of Red Deer