Rules, photo radar and police provide Canmore 2021 stats

The Town of Canmore Committee of the Whole updated statistics from the local RCMP detachment, by-law department and photo radar program.

CANMORE – Canmore RCMP are receiving support to respond to and monitor mental health related calls.

During an update to the Canmore Committee of the Whole covering an overview of statistics on the local police detachment and by-law department and the Town of Canmore photo radar program, Staff Sgt. Canmore RCMP. Ryan Singleton said the past year has been difficult, but Canmore is “an extremely safe community”.

He said the detachment now has support from the Regional Police and Crisis Team (RPACT), which can respond to or monitor mental health-related calls.

“It’s a huge hit,” Singleton said.

The team is made up of RCMP officers and a registered psychiatric nurse, who work out of an unmarked police vehicle and alternate days and evenings every two weeks.

RPACT members respond to calls for service and complete a Form 10 under the Mental Health Act approximately 80% of the time the person is in custody, compared to 30% with first responders.

The service also provides mental health counseling and education and can refer people to community resources.

“We’ve been asking for it for years, so it was nice to see funding,” Singleton said.

The Canmore Detachment has 19 municipally funded officers and four provincially funded officers, for a total complement of 28 employees.

Most of the police statistical categories showed a decrease from last year and 2020. For example, assaults fell from 154 in 2020 to 133 last year, while sexual assaults fell from 13 reported at 10.

By-law violations fell from 312 in 2020 to 287 last year, while mental health calls also fell from 174 to 134.

Vehicle collisions were lower, with provincial tickets dropping from 2,437 in 2020 to 2,044 in 2021 and Criminal Code tickets from 83 in 2020 to 49 in 2021.

Of the 382 new cases opened by the Bow Valley Victim Services Association from April 2020 to April 2021, 178 were in Canmore, including 91 calls related to domestic violence.

In a year-end report on municipal services for the Town of Canmore, Greg Burt, the municipality’s municipal services supervisor, noted the “positive impact” the new paid parking system has had on Quarry Lake. .

He said that after a difficult 2020 at the popular site, the introduction of paid parking has helped “enhance the visitor experience at Quarry Lake and improve the livability of residents”.

“The program and the staff have absolutely had a positive impact on what we see up there,” Burt said. “I lived 2020 in Quarry Lake and it’s something I’ve never seen before and something I hope I don’t want for.”

Additionally, four other parking lot ambassadors have been hired for seasonal work to highlight Quarry Lake rules such as no drinking in public, education about potential human-wildlife interactions and the informing people that the Kananaskis Country Pass is separate from the Quarry Lake Pass.

“The presence of these four officers was critical to the success of the program,” Burt said.

According to the staff report, by-law departments had 10,700 in-person interactions last summer, ranging from paid parking to questions about bear safety. Of these, 97% were considered positive.

In 2021, the regulations department was involved in 1,018 investigations, compared to 1,153 in 2020. Of these, 41% concerned parking, traffic and road use, while clearing sidewalks represented 18% and pet control 11%.

There were 2,056 warnings and tickets issued last year, up from 932 in 2020. The staff report noted that the increase was largely due to paid parking at Quarry Lake, where 897 tickets were issued.

Of the 1,726 tickets issued in 2021, 1,701 related to traffic regulations and road use.

The Bylaws Department will also be renamed the Bylaws Enforcement Department on April 4 to align with neighboring areas such as Cochrane, Banff and Airdrie.

“Although our name is changing, our level of commitment to engaging with residents and visitors, to contributing to a safe and livable community remains the same,” Burt said.

“The automated traffic control program saw a 34% increase in hours last year.”

There were 8,916 photo radar violations last year, compared to 6,404 in 2020. The figure for 2021 is the fifth highest since 2008. Residents accounted for 30% of violations last year, while the rest were non-residents.

The program, which operates about 20 hours a week, generated net revenue of about $250,000 last year, but some of that revenue goes to the contractor and the province.

Revenue from the photo radar program was used to introduce traffic calming measures, sidewalk improvements in the Mountaineers’ Village and crosswalks, traffic calming and new sidewalks in Stewart Creek.

Caitlin Miller, protective services manager for the town of Canmore, said Palliser Trail will no longer have photo radar from April 1 after a data review determined there were fewer people speeding since its introduction.

“We haven’t seen that much speeding in that area… With the traffic calming projects, we haven’t seen that much speeding in that area. … It gives us the information we need to be able to make those decisions and put in more technical traffic calming elements to make the streets safer,” she said.

“With 70% being non-residents, it’s harder to develop these habits because people come from outside the community and speed in these areas.”

Late last year, the province of Alberta announced new photo radar legislation, which among other things prohibits municipalities from using the technology on roads where drivers are changing speeds quickly, such as at exits. highway, and not to use it in areas where the speed limit is less than 50 km. /h except for school and construction zones. The new law will come into force in April.

A review of the photo radar program will return to Canmore Council this spring.