One London Police Services Board member says he needs to know if there is a council of the willing to help avoid an arbitration process between the City and police.
Paul Paolatto says he is not happy with city council over what he calls a tentative deal about a week before the multi-year budget was approved.
Paolatto says talks with City Treasurer Martin Hayward at the end of February were going well and that a verbal agreement on a deal was reached.
Days later, however, the deal was no more.
Mayor Matt Brown says he was aware of those discussions but knew no specifics.
Brown says there are ways police can have their voice heard at the horseshoe.
“This board could have brought that forward, an individual council member could bring it forward, or it could come forward by a staff recommendation. Until that occurs, there really isn’t a proposal in any way shape or form.”
During Thursday’s meeting, Paolatto said he “needs to see someone from council to step up” and asked “where is council in terms of trying to get this reserved?”
Mayor Brown said he’s optimistic about getting a deal done before a last resort appeal process.
“I think that, to this point, council has been very open to receiving delegations from the London Police Services Board. Council made a decision during budget and the decision stands at this time. I think, my personal opinion and the most appropriate route for this organization to take if they would like to enter in discussions, is to approach council in a public way.”
Police had originally requested $397-million from city council over a four-year period. Council eventually agreed on giving $393-million.
Since then, police have threatened to go to arbitration with the Ontario Civilian Police Commission, a process Paolatto calls “lengthy, pricey, and adversarial.”