The chief of the Surrey Police Service has dinged taxpayers for almost $22,000 in overtime since January, even though the department has not investigated a single crime.
Chief Norm Lipinski, who is already paid $258,000 base salary per year, billed $21,923.08 for the first nine months of the year, according to figures released under freedom of information. One of his deputies, Jennifer Hyland, has racked up $9,546.88 in overtime charges. They are building a police force that may not be fully operational and ready to replace the Surrey RCMP until 2023 or later.
A former Solicitor General, who was chief of the West Vancouver Police and a deputy at the Vancouver Police, called it “an anomaly” and an extra burden on the Surrey taxpayer.
“This practice is unheard of in policing,” Kash Heed said in an interview. “I have not heard of this practice in my 32 years in policing, and some of that time I held executive positions in two different police departments. The practice, not only in the public service, but in private industry, is if you have to work an extraordinary number of extra hours, what you do is what we call book time.”
That book time is measured in days off, not extra pay.
Lipinski refused theBreaker.news interview request. Instead, he deferred to SPS spokesman Ian MacDonald, who admitted that Lipinski could have taken time off instead of the extra pay.
“The creation of a new police organization from scratch is a lot of work for a large group of people let alone initially just a Chief and three deputies as staff, as it was in the beginning of 2021,” MacDonald said via email. “A great deal of work is, and was, done by the Chief to stand up Surrey Police Service and his overtime compensation for that work is at straight-time.”
theBreaker.news previously reported that Lipinski charged taxpayers for a $37,521.12 Nissan Rogue. Under a separate freedom of information request, City of Surrey confirmed that Lipinski used the civic works yard gas pump for $1,823 in gas to drive the Rogue to and from his residence in Vancouver’s Yaletown neighbourhood.
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