Re: “Surrey council gives final nod to $150.6 million in loans for recreation projects,” the Now-Leader, April 22.
Community advocates who have called for defunding of police have consistently pointed out the extent to which policing expenditures come at the cost of other programs and services that may, in fact, do more to sustain community connections, health and wellbeing.
We are certainly seeing this coming to roost in Surrey with the massive costs associated with the transition to the Surrey Police Service.
Now we have the news that Surrey council has approved taking out $150.6 million in loans over 25 years in order to pay for three recreation projects (City Centre, Cloverdale, and Newton). This is a burden not only on the present but on the future.
Note that under the city’s 2021 budget, the allocated capital cost of the policing transition is projected at $63 million. Most believe it will balloon well beyond this amount.
The city has many needs that should have taken priority over this increasingly farcical policing spectacle.
Jeff Shantz, Surrey