By Kevin Woodhouse
While the city of Kirkland will continue to have security personnel patrol 24 hours a day, seven days a week, they will now do so as members of the city’s Municipal Patrol and not as Public Security.
“It was really just a matter of the wording itself,” Director General Joe Sanalitro told The Suburban. “For the agglomeration of Montreal, public security encompasses everything from fire fighters, EMTs and the police. Because our patrollers are not peace officers but enforce the city bylaws, we changed the name accordingly but the service remains the same.”
The municipal patrol’s mandate is to be preventative by being the eyes and ears of the police, giving tickets for bylaw offenders if need be as well as handling parking issues. During the summer, patrollers keep an eye out throughout the city’s bike paths as well as ensuring outdoor pools have followed all safety protocols.
The municipal patrol is comprised of students in the police technology program.
Concerning the emerald ash borer (EAB), the city is currently establishing an inventory of all trees and “this should be completed by next year,” said Sanalitro. “We have been identifying the age, type and general health of each tree.”
The insidious insects have been found in Pointe Claire and in Pierrefonds-Roxboro, roughly two blocks away from Kirkland’s city limits, so for Sanalitro, dealing with the bugs is a matter of if and not when.
“Once the inventory is done, the big debate of what to do next will be on the table, “the director general said.”We will need to determine what our next step will be: cut down infected trees or treat them? Simply letting the species die off isn’t a great alternative but we need to find a solution that is not hazardous to the environment.
As a way of giving back to the community, Kirkland recently enacted a program where new births in the city are rewarded with a new donated tree.
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