A STATE Government push to boost police numbers has failed to deliver new officers to Colac and district.
Surf Coast Police Service Area Inspector Bruce Kitchen said not one of Victoria Police’s 600 new officers would come to the district.
“To my knowledge, we won’t be getting any new officers as part of this first wave, but I’m hopeful that we will get some down the track,” Mr Kitchen said.
“Obviously, like anyone would, we’d be hoping for more staff because that helps with our proactive policing approach,” he said.
“The government is introducing new officers as part of a four-year roll-out, so I can’t say whether we’ll be getting new staff next time or not, that’s up to police command.
“But the simple fact is that the Surf Coast PSA is not on the priority list because there has been a decline in the crime rate, the latest numbers will show it’s down by 7.2 per cent, so we’re tracking well.”
The State Government pledged more than 1600 new police officers at last year’s state election and Polwarth MP Terry Mulder said future recruits could benefit Colac and district.
“It is up to the Police Commissioner in regards to where the police are deployed, and obviously they’re going to target high-crime areas with the first batch of recruits, so in that respect I’m glad that’s not my electorate,” Mr Mulder said.
“But I understand how important it is to have more police officers, because it’s about being proactive instead of simply tackling crime after it occurs,” he said.
Police and Emergency Services Minister Peter Ryan said the government was committed to bolstering the police frontline in Colac.