In response to follow-up questions from Langley City council about RCMP involvement with mayor Val van den Broek’s gala fundraiser, a top RCMP officer said any queries about Township Mounties working overtime to pay for tickets would have to come from the Township.
In her June 7 letter, filed with the Monday, June 28 council agenda, Assistant Commissioner Maureen Levy, the Lower Mainland district commander, said it would be “inappropriate for my office to share or disclose any financial information about another municipality without their expressed consent. Should you wish this financial information, please feel free to contact the Township of Langley directly.”
Levy also responded to three other questions, including one about an apparent discrepancy between the total amount officers paid for tickets, $8,100, and the amount of overtime billed, $361.44 according to a previous Levy letter.
“I am not disputing the fact that other RCMP police officers and their respective spouses/guests attended this gala,” Levy wrote.
“However, I can confirm that the City of Langley was billed $361.44 for four hours of overtime which could be traced back to the email that Supt. [Murray] Power sent to his senior officers in order to encourage them to attend the Mayor’s Gala.
As to why it took the RCMP a year to response to the city questions about the overtime costs, Levy said while a Code of Conduct review of the matter under the RCMP act was underway, the result of a complaint, the force was entitled to withhold financial information.
With that review completed, “there is no legal reason to not disclose the requested financial information to the City of Langley,” Levy said.
“As such, this information has already been supplied to the City of Langley.”
And as to why Power was reassigned, Levy indicated the code of conduct review of the matter did not lead to a formal dismissal hearing, which would be the only situation where information would be made public.
“Conduct is subject to the Privacy Act and only in such cases that the matter results in a formal Conduct Dismissal Hearing, would information be public. This was not the case in this matter.”
Power was moved out of the Langley detachment without explanation after news of the overtime offer by Power to senior officers surfaced.
In January of 2020, the Winter Wonderland Gala organized by Mayor Val van den Broek, in partnership with the local RCMP, resulted in a $56,000 donation to the Langley Memorial Hospital Foundation.
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In April, Council ordered a third report on the use of RCMP overtime to help cover the cost of tickets for Mayor Val van den Broek’s Jan. 25, 2020 gala fundraiser.
In the second report, Levy confirmed one officer who attended the event had worked four hours overtime.
Several members of council were skeptical, pointing to the first report by Paul Gill, the former Maple Ridge general manager of finance and corporate services, which said 35 Langley RCMP members attended the event and 19 of them came with spouses or guests, buying 54 tickets for a total value of $8,100.
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