Mr. Speaker, in response to (a), as part of our safer communities strategy, this government has delivered on a key platform commitment by making funding available to provinces and territories to support the recruitment of 2,500 new front-line police officers. Budget 2008 set aside $400 million to assist provinces and territories with the hiring of new front-line police officers. This money has been invested in a third-party trust for provinces and territories, allocated proportionately, to meet this objective.
In response to (b), all provinces and territories chose to participate in this initiative, and on June 22, 2008, the $400 million was allocated as follows: Newfoundland and Labrador, $5.9 million; Prince Edward Island, $1.6 million; Nova Scotia, $11.2 million; New Brunswick, $8.8 million; Quebec, $92.3 million; Ontario, $156 million; Manitoba, $14.4 million; Saskatchewan, $11.7 million; Alberta, $42.4 million; British Columbia, $53.3 million; and each of the three territories received $800,000. Provinces and territories have the flexibility to draw down all of these funds at any time over five years.
In response to (c), to date, seven of the provinces--Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Alberta, Prince Edward Island, British Columbia and New Brunswick--have, through public media releases, announced their intentions with the funding. Publicly announced hiring includes 30 new positions in Saskatchewan, 45 officers in Nova Scotia this year as part of a plan to hire 250 officers by 2011, 329 officers in Ontario, 83 officers in Alberta and 168 officers in British Columbia. Prince Edward Island is using its share to staff and launch its Criminal Intelligence Service Bureau, and New Brunswick is investing its portion to improve regional integrated intelligence units to fight organized crime, establish a police cadet graduate bursary to attract recruits, as well as establish a safer communities and neighbourhoods enforcement unit.
In response to (d), establishing the first-ever Police Officers Recruitment Fund is a considerable investment that marks an important step forward in a way that respects provincial and territorial jurisdiction for policing while ensuring maximum flexibility. Consistent with their responsibility for policing, it is up to the provinces and territories to allocate funding as they see fit to their municipal and provincial police services. Provinces and territories are able to use the trust fund in a way that is best suited to address their local public safety priorities and policing needs. The government concluded its active role in the Police Officers Recruitment Fund on June 22, 2008, with the establishment of trust accounts for each jurisdiction.
In response to (e), consistent with their responsibility for policing, it is up to the provinces and territories to allocate funding as they see fit to their municipal and provincial police services. Provinces and territories are able to use the trust fund in a way that is best suited to address their local public safety priorities and policing needs. Provincial and territorial governments have been encouraged to report directly to their residents on the expenditures and the outcomes achieved.