The Town of Fort Macleod and other stakeholders in the police college met recently at Red Deer.
Mayor Shawn Patience represented his community at a meeting of about 60 people from departments and organizations with an interest in the Alberta Public Security and Law Enforcement Training Centre.
“There are questions that still need to be answered,” Patience said. “Everyone is still trying to get a feel for what their role is.”
The provincial government intends to build the $122-million police college on 320 acres provided by the Town of Fort Macleod just off Highway 2 south.
The plan is to train 250 police recruits, 250 Sheriffs and Corrections officers, 250 community peace officers and 600 professional development students each year.
In addition, police and peace officers will come to Fort Macleod for professional development courses.
The college will include a residence that can house 270 students. That’s down from the capacity of 380 students in the original plans.
The facility will include classrooms, indoor and outdoor firearm ranges, a driving track, gymnasium, running track and eating facilities.
A contract for construction will be in place early next year and construction will be complete in 2014.
About 60 people representing Alberta Infrastructure, the Solicitor General’s office, police departments and police commissions took part in the meeting at Red Deer.
“It was really a workshop looking at governance models,” Patience said. “Since the announcement was made it was the first time getting all the groups together.”
Premier Ed Stelmach came to Fort Macleod in February to announce the government would build the police college, rather than continuing to pursue a P3 partner.
In the budget released in March the government included $122-million over three years for construction of the police college.
The people attending the workshop took part in an exercise in which they were to describe what the police college means to each of them.
“There was also a lot of discussion about how to make up a steering committee,” Patience said.
Calgary Police Services Chief Rick Hansen was at the meeting, along with representatives from police departments in Medicine Hat, Lethbridge, Taber, Camrose and Edmonton.
“They’re putting their best foot forward in terms of trying to engage everyone,” Patience said. “I thought it was very good.”
There was discussion at the meeting about community involvement in the development of the police college.
“I’m a proponent that it needs to be involved,” Patience said.