604 Now

Occupy Vancouver Costs Approach $1 Million

Managing the Occupy Vancouver protest for the first two months cost nearly $1 million, according to a new memorandum from city manager Penny Ballem.

The memo, sent Monday to council and Mayor Gregor Robertson, divides the estimated $981,103 protest price tag between the Vancouver Police Department, city engineering department, Emergency Operations Centre and Vancouver Fire and Rescue Services.

The data doesn’t include the “extensive time spent by many exempt managers from across all departments… who worked many days and nights to effectively manage this challenging situation,” Ballem wrote.

Policing made up the bulk of the cost, with an estimated $590,000 incurred from the Oct. 15 launch of the protest to Dec. 15. The city says that number was largely due to overtime costs and additional deployment.

Almost $400,000 of the policing cost was spent by Oct. 20, according to the memo.

Engineering cost $345,878 during the same period, with $127,124 being spent during the first two weeks of the protest.

Staffing the Emergency Operations Centre cost $28,494 while Vancouver fire services cost $16,730.

Ballem said the cost was curbed by dispatching fire department staff to monitor the protest, which “allowed us to significantly reduce the VPD presence where the costs are significant.”

The city manager also compared Vancouver’s expenditures with other North American cities, such as Portland, Oregon and Oakland, California, which racked up more than $1.4 million and $2.4 million respectively in policing and park restoration alone.


Could have built a lot affordable housing with that money..

Log in or create an account to save content

Become a local insider