Waterloo police service $1.8M over budget in 2012

The Waterloo Regional Police Service was $1.8 million over budget in the past year, largely due to higher than anticipated labour and overtime costs.

Labour costs account for lion's share of overspending

The Waterloo Regional Police Service was $1.8 million over budget in the past year, largely due to higher than anticipated labour and overtime costs.

The police service spent $3.4 million more than it budgeted for in 2012's $134 million budget, according to a budget report that will be discussed by the Waterloo Region Police Services Board on Wednesday. The excess expenditure was offset by $1.6 million in higher than expected revenues.

The following is a breakdown of the overspending:

  • $1.7 million in higher than expected labour costs came from wages and benefits. This "anticipated" overspending was due mainly to an arbitration ruling last year that granted police a 2.7 per cent raise, the report said. During the budget process that preceded the arbitration ruling, the force had only accounted for a 2.0 per cent raise.
  • $1.2 million in higher than expected overtime and court costs accounted for overspending.
  • $285,000 for sick leave payments that had to be paid out to retiring officers.

The remainder of the overages came from a number of items like fees, services, and one-time costs.

The net $1.8 million shortage will have to be paid out from the force's reserve fund.

News of the overexpenditures comes after a year in which the police services board ordered a reduction of the force by eight officer through attrition partly in order to keep costs down.