The Ottawa Police Service (OPS) tabled its 2023 Draft Operating and Capital Budget with the Ottawa Police Services Board (OPSB) at a special meeting of the Board this morning. That meeting recording can be viewed on Youtube.
“This Draft Budget is designed to make strategic investments in public safety that ensure we have the resources to properly respond to calls for service and emergencies,” said Chief Eric Stubbs. “This includes how we develop our operational and partnered response to public events and demonstrations.”
The 2023 Draft Budget is focused on ensuring that our community can see and experience its return on investment in policing, including improved public safety, social change, and community building.
Draft 2023 Budget highlights:
- The draft budget includes a detailed and transparent spending plan as well as operational and policy decisions that are designed to build public trust, prioritize the care of all residents and members, and supports the City of Ottawa’s Community Safety and Well-Being Plan (CWSB).
- Allocation of 25 new full-time equivalent positions
- New and ongoing investments in strategic priorities, including promotion and implementation of Equity Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) and CSWB initiatives, to support the health, safety, and wellness of our communities and our members
- Advancement on strategic, operational, and partnered responses to public events and demonstrations
- Modernization of policing services, and delivery on commitments made in the Facilities Strategic Plan (FSP) through the advancement on the South Facility Project
The OPS has continued to make meaningful progress on its strategic initiatives in 2022. Many of these projects will continue through 2023. Work has been primarily focused on advancing EDI, addressing anti-hate, anti-racism, the rise in mental health and substance abuse calls for service, and improving collaboration with community partners and stakeholders.
“The budget is an extremely important document for the Board and the Service as it provides a financial map for how we will achieve our policing priorities in the coming year,” stated Chair Suzanne Valiquet. “We look forward to hearing from the community as part of our budget process.”
Budget Financial Highlights
The gross operating budget totals $401.2 million under the draft 2023 proposal. With the deduction of one-time revenue, non-taxation revenue and recoveries, the net operating budget for the OPS is $359 million. This level represents an increase of $15.2 million over 2022. With the assessment growth assumption of 2.2 percent, the resulting net increase to the police taxation revenues is 2.5 percent. This equates to an approximate $17 increase in taxes per household, which brings the total to $680 for the average Ottawa residence.
The OPS Draft Budget is a declining portion of the overall City Budget. In 2017 it represented 9.7% of the City Budget. In 2023, it would be 8.9%.
The OPS has identified and implemented efficiencies as part of its annual budget process to ensure that the organization operates in a way that is lean and fiscally responsible. On average, during the previous 10 years, efficiencies achieved have been in the $2 million range per year. The 2022 Budget included $7.05 million in efficiencies. The Service identified $5.05 million in permanent budget base reductions, and the Board reduced the budget by an additional $2 million.
The 2023 efficiencies amount is less than what has historically been achieved annually due to the ambitious $7.05 million efficiency target from 2022 that is still being finalized. The $500,000 efficiency identified for 2023 has been reinvested into the organization in the form of four new positions to assist in reducing the growth requirements for the OPS.
We want to hear from you…
The OPS wants to hear from residents and businesses about their thoughts on the 2023 Budget. Please consider completing the 2023 Draft Budget questionnaire, located at https://www.ottawapolice.ca/en/who-we-are/budget.aspx
Public delegations and questions from Ottawa City Councillors are welcome at the February 15, 2023, Finance and Audit Committee meeting starting at 10 a.m. via Zoom at the following link: https://us02web.zoom.us/j/82194776002 [us02web.zoom.us]
Comments are also welcome at the beginning of the regular meeting of the OPSB on February 27, 2023, starting at 2 p.m. (via Zoom - link to be announced by OPSB).
The OPS 2023 Budget is scheduled for approval by the OPSB on February 27, 2023. It will later be reviewed and scheduled for approval by Ottawa City Council on March 1, 2023.
A complete copy of the OPS’ 2023 Draft Operating and Capital Budget can be reviewed by visiting https://www.ottawapolice.ca/en/who-we-are/budget.aspx
You can also request a copy of the report by emailing [email protected].