According to the 2016 budget

DNA testing expected to increase Saanich costs

Saanich expecting to carry $56,000 in additional costs for DNA testing

Saanich anticipates spending more money on DNA testing in the future after changes to the funding formula for this criminal investigation tool, according to Saanich’s 2016-2020 financial plan.

No cost figures are available, “but are dependent on the number of examinations required, and are anticipated to increase as technology makes testing a more viable investigative tool,” it reads.

According to the 2016 budget, Saanich has to shoulder an estimated $56,000 in additional costs for DNA testing following the changes which came into effect Jan. 1, 2016.

RCMP Forensic Sciences and Identification Services lab falls under the National Police Services, a federally funded agency under the stewardship of the RCMP,  which provides DNA testing services.

In 2004, the provinces and Ottawa agreed to a funding agreement for the service under which B.C. has historically contributed $1.36 million, according to a provincial backgrounder. According to the same backgrounder, the federal government told B.C. that it would no longer continue to provide DNA testing services at historical levels and “would require reimbursement based on actual costs.”

After negotiations between Ottawa and Victoria, the two sides agreed to a new funding formula that will see the province cap its historical contribution at $1.36 million.

With DNA testing costs set to reach $4.4 million by 2020, municipalities with populations of more than 5,000 people across B.C. will have to find an additional $3.3 million, according to previously published reports. The province will continue to fund DNA testing costs for municipalities of less than 5,000.

When the new funding formula became public, Saanich joined a number of communities opposing the changes.

While a small item in the city’s police budget of almost $31 million, the issue itself has become a sore point between the province and municipalities as yet another example of provincial downloading.

The Union of British Columbia Municipalities passed a resolution this September that urged the province to reverse its cuts. Provincial officials including Justice Minister Suzanne Anton and Solicitor General Mike Morris have previously told municipal governments to take up their concerns with the federal government.

It is not yet clear how these funding changes will impact Saanich.

While acting Sgt. Jereme Leslie would not disclose the number and types of investigations that use DNA testing, “as speaking to that could jeopardize future/ongoing investigations,” he says the funding change “does not impact our ability to perform DNA testing.”

 

Just Posted

Cycslists were all smiles during ninth Tour de Victoria

More than 2,100 cyclists participated

‘I’m just absolutely disgusted’: Husband furious after Const. Beckett’s killer gets day parole

Kenneth Fenton was sentenced to prison after he fatally struck Const. Sarah Beckett’s cruiser

Police investigating incident in Saanich neighbourhood

Neighbours tell Black Press Media that a body has been found, but police remain tight-lipped.

Colwood man takes on Ride to Conquer Cancer for 11th year in a row

Team Finn has raised almost $3 million for BC Cancer Foundation

Langford lizard sighting excites Victoria museum curator

Curator of vertebrate zoology/knowledge explains the spread of the Wall lizard in the region

VIDEO: Langley Ribfest met with protesters

Groups that oppose the event for various reasons plan to be on site each of the three days.

Canadians killed in Afghanistan honoured during emotional dedication ceremony

One-hundred-fifty-eight Canadian soldiers died during the mission

It’s snow joke: Up to 30 cm of snow expected to fall in northeastern B.C.

Alaska Highway, Fort Nelson to be hit with August snowstorm, according to Environment Canada

Sea-to-Sky Gondola in B.C. likely out of commission until 2020

Sea to Sky Gondola carries between 1,500 and 3,000 people every day during the summer season

Helicopter-riding dog Mr. Bentley now featured on cans of new B.C.-made beer

Partial proceeds from every pack go to Children’s Wish

PHOTOS: Weapons seized at Portland right-wing rally, counterprotests

Not all who gathered Saturday were with right-wing groups or antifa

Ferries employees participating in Denman Island cleanup for plastic-shedding ferry

The cleanup comes a few weeks after one organized by residents of the Island

Discussion on grief and loss between Stephen Colbert, Anderson Cooper goes viral

The exchange includes emotional question from Cooper, and outlook on grief as a child

Toronto activist calling on federal parties to nominate more black candidates

Fewer than 20 black Canadians have been nominated so far, including some Liberal MPs seeking re-election

Most Read