Um - aren't these people supposed to know what's going on?
RCMP pay hikes stun B.C. politicians
Several municipalities in British Columbia are raising the alarm over what they say are completely unexpected pay raises given to the RCMP.
Langley Mayor Peter Fassbender said Thursday that he only learned this week that the RCMP were given raises in last week's federal budget.
The news has come as a shock to provincial and municipal officials, who just signed a new 20-year contract with the national police force.
The agreement, which is essentially identical to contracts reached in five other provinces and three territories, comes a year after B.C. threatened to pull out of negotiations altogether and set up its own force.
The officials say the deal, signed only two weeks ago, was supposed to end a history of costly surprises.
But Fassbender said there was no mention of pay raises during the negotiations.
"This was being done by Treasury Board, which is where the pay council for the RCMP is housed," Fassbender said. "And it was part of the federal budget. So what's disappointing is that there was no heads up given by Treasury Board to anybody, even in their own federal ministry, that this was going to be coming down."
RCMP members will be getting pay raises over each of the next three years.
The fear is that the raises represent an unforeseen financial hit to local governments that could total millions of dollars.
Surrey Mayor Dianne Watts, whose city is home to the largest RCMP detachment in the country, says she feels she's been blindsided.
B.C. Justice Minister Shirley Bond says she was caught off-guard and has asked Ottawa for clarification.