Vicki Eide of Deans’ Tailor Shop wants the city to pay for private security
There are more calls for the City of Vernon to beef up enforcement of the downtown and Mayor Victor Cumming says safety issues will be top of the list during budget deliberations.
City council meets Wednesday to begin consideration of the 2019 municipal budget — which already proposes moving summer patrols of Polson Park to base funding.
However, local businesswoman Vicki Eide is calling on the city to pay for private security for downtown businesses that she says are coping with graffiti, garbage and loitering.
“You will see many homeless and street-entrenched people in doorways, all the parks, in alcoves and alleys and along our roadways; panhandling on meridians,” Eide states in a letter to council.
Already paying for a private security firm, Eide claims downtown businesses are more vulnerable to the criminal element and is appealing to the city to take her request seriously.
Cumming says staff are reviewing the letter and that councillors will have it in mind when they begin budget deliberations this week.
“We’ll be looking at the complete safety issue in this budget,” Cumming says.
While the mayor points out that commissionaires at one time patrolled the downtown, he would not commit to them in next year’s budget.
The hefty RCMP budget is actually the first item on the printed agenda, followed by the fire department.