Gerry Rogers Question Period (11.19.2013)

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John’s Centre.

MS ROGERS: Mr. Speaker, the Town of Victoria wrote the minister outlining their very real concerns –

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

MS ROGERS: – about the rise in crime in their communities, speeding, drug related crimes, ATV violations, vandalism, and harassment of seniors; all arising from what they say is a lack of front line policing in their community.

Mr. Speaker, I ask the minister: What is he going to do about this?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Justice.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. KING: Thank you.

Mr. Speaker, a very good question. The short answer is I am going to continue to do, with the support of the Premier and government, what we have always done, and that is invest in front line policing services in this Province.

I remind the member, it is to the tune of more than $900 million over the last ten years and somewhere in the area of 140 new police officers. We get representation every day, Mr. Speaker, from communities that have concerns. Most of them do not make political issues of it, like the member opposite is doing today by raising it in the Legislature where it just shines a light on a community for criminals and others to have a look at.

Most people come to me privately and they talk to me through the RCMP and the RNC who have particular jurisdictions, and we do it in a professional manner.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John’s Centre.

I would ask the member to ask a quick question without preamble.

MS ROGERS: Mr. Speaker, is the minister still clinging to the weak assertion that cutting $4.3 million and the loss of fifty-five positions to the RCMP will not affect policing services in rural Newfoundland and Labrador?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Justice, for a quick response.

MR. KING: Mr. Speaker, I am clinging to two assertions. Number one, that the member opposite is playing political football because there is a by-election in Carbonear District; and, number two, I am clinging to the assertion I have from the RCMP that there have been no cuts – no cuts – to that area of the Province in front line policing.

Associated Caucus Members: 

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