Both say there was no consultation with the City, let alone the community, about the new police model.
Mr Templeman said he grilled Police Minister Liza Harvey and Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan in Parliament regarding the ‘total absorption’ of the Peel Police District into South Metropolitan Police.
He said both confirmed the Peel Regional Office would close and the Peel Traffic Unit would be relocated to Forrestdale in September.
‘The Barnett Government simply sees us as a southern suburb of Perth and believes the critical services like policing can be delivered from Perth; this is simply unacceptable,’ he said.
Mr Templeman said Ms Harvey promised more resources for Peel but said she was sketchy on details.
‘Ms Harvey said the new model would improve policing, with more resources being available to the region, but she couldn’t tell me how many more officers we would be getting,’ he said.
Cr Lee was livid at the move and holds concerns for the Mandurah community.
‘I’m always suspicious of this total disregard for us as a population in our own right,’ Cr Lee said.
‘The community wasn’t consulted and neither was the council; it came as a shock.
‘I believe this loss will bring about extended response time, if any, an increase in crime as the general police pick up minor traffic offences, taking them away from their core responsibility of ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our community.’
Both agreed Mandurah already faced unacceptably high burglary levels, consistent hooning, and a rise in violence, including domestic violence.
‘This will stagger out of control with this announcement and I am generally concerned for the residents of Mandurah,’ Cr Lee said.
Opposition police spokeswoman Michelle Roberts said the success the Government was touting for the South East Metropolitan Trial was deceptive.
‘Every time they say it’s working, it is because they bring in more officers to cover operations,’ she said. ‘It’s not rocket science; an increase in police numbers will always bring a better result.
‘General duties officers will be consumed on minor traffic issues.’
She said the new model would see Mandurah lose a key organisational base.
‘There will be at least six staff to leave from the district office, along with the transfer of Peel Traffic,’ she said.
‘It’s a major regional area; it makes no sense to move out of Mandurah.
‘It’s policing on the cheap, trying to do more with less.
‘The distances are simply too large; in practice it will mean less cars on the road.’
Ms Harvey did not respond before the Times went to press.