Edmonton police chief discussing possible contract extension
‘We’re just having discussions,’ says Rod Knecht
Rod Knecht is considering staying on as Edmonton police chief beyond the end of his current contract, which is due to expire on Oct. 31, 2018.
"I'm told that discussions are continuing with the police commission regarding the chief's retirement date and the possibility of a contract extension," a spokesperson for the Edmonton Police Service wrote in a statement emailed to CBC News.
Knecht was asked before an Edmonton Police Commission meeting Thursday if he had made up his mind about the future.
"I'm still in discussions," he said. "Actually, we're having an in-camera discussion here today and we'll see how that goes. We might have some news later this week or early next week."
When it was suggested there would be nothing to discuss if he planned to retire at the end of his contract, Knecht would only say: "You know, really, I can't tell you one way or the other. We'll just see what happens, I guess."
Knecht has led EPS since 2011. After two years on the job, his contract was extended by the police commission to 2018.
Last December, the chief said he was considering staying on past that date.
Police commission chair Tim O'Brien said Thursday was the first time the issue would be discussed in depth.
"We're just kind of plotting a bit of a path going forward," O'Brien said.
On Thursday, Knecht indicated there are still some projects he wants to see through, including cyber-crime and a proposed community wellness centre.
"There's probably always something left undone," he said.
Time to reflect on his future
Knecht appeared at the police commission meeting sporting a black sling to protect his left shoulder. He had a mishap on the ski slopes in February.
"It was a skiing accident," Knecht said. "Going down the hill and I ran into a snowboarder. Actually, the snowboarder ran into me. And over I went. And these 60-year-old bones aren't the same they were when I was 17. So they're taking a little longer to heal."
Knecht had surgery but only missed nine days of work.
The chief was asked if he issued any kind of ticket to the offending snowboarder.
"I couldn't catch him," Knecht said with a laugh. "I was actually incapacitated."