BY KALISHA MENDONSA
Members of the Lacombe Police Service (LPS) are excited to be settling into their new facility, which is fully operational but still lacking a few finishing touches.
Acting Police Chief, Inspector Lorne Blumhagen has said things are moving along well and the team is glad to be in their new facility. He said LPS is looking forward to having a fully complete facility to continue to serve the citizens of Lacombe.
Officers moved into the facility last month upon operational completion of the project.
“The space and the facility are fantastic, and the change from our old facility to this one is definitely a big positive. With our furnishings coming in this week, we’re going to have the ability to settle into our space a lot more comfortably, efficiently and effectively,” Blumhagen said.
“We’re enjoying the new space. We’re hoping that with all of our new changes we will be able to streamline some of our working processes in the coming weeks. That will allow us to be able to implement a few more procedural items that aim to help us raise our service deliveries in the community.”
One of the new changes Blumhagen is referring to is the return of localized dispatch services to LPS. This was a significant change implemented within the new facility and is expected to help services by decreasing response times and allowing for better communication between officers and dispatch.
“Just last week we transitioned to our own local dispatch from the RCMP Red Deer Operations Communications Centre, and along with that we have switched over to the Alberta First Responders Communication System,” Blumhagen said.
“We are still ironing out some details, but we do officially have our new dispatch in place. We’ve been utilizing that new dispatch system but hadn’t quite made that announcement public yet as we wanted to be on the safe side of full operation. We had a few hiccups moving forward there but have made our transition.”
On Oct. 24th, Lacombe City council accepted an amendment made to a previous borrowing bylaw to account for an additional $131,297. This was well under the allowed 15% potential increase of borrowing total that was accounted for during planning processes, bringing the total borrowed amount for the facility of approximately $9 million.
An expense that was accepted as part of the facility budget was the relocation of the regional waterline, which came at a total cost of $82,068 according to council agenda notes. As well, a new records management system was implemented in the new facility as were a new probation office, probation officer and associated training costs.
The City committed to the new facility back in 2014, and plans have moved along steadily since then. The new facility is located on Wolf Creek Drive.