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Commissioner: Keep new police station in top shape

Commissioner: Keep new police station in top shape

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Police officers taking up duties at the new $1.8 million Questelles Police Station from November 1 have been warned to keep the facility in top shape or face a penalty.{{more}}

This warning came from Commissioner of Police Keith Miller as he promised to be “hard” and “tough” on anyone – officers,as well as civilians – who vandalize the new facility.

Miller’s stern warning was issued on Monday, October 19, 2009, at the official opening of the police station.

“I want to remind personnel who will be living here that any act of reckless damage will be paid for from their pockets,” said Miller.

He added: “Gone are the days when certain properties were seen as belonging to the government. They are not really the government’s they are ours. So we have to treat them as such.”

Miller appealed to the residents in attendance to monitor the upkeep of the building and not to allow police officers or anyone else to damage it.

The new police station is equipped to accommodate 30 police officers. The former police station housed eight police officers.

In his key note address, Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves disclosed that members of the Rapid Response Unit (RRU) will also be based at the new facility.

The two and a half storey building, located just one block away from the old Questelles Police Station has a total area of 10,940 square feet. The area on the ground floor is 1,600 square feet with an additional 1,200 square feet for further development. This floor was built with a garage, a laundry, a records room, a storage room, a gym, and a wash room.

The centre floor or first floor has a functional area of 4,000 square feet. This floor was constructed with a general work area leading to the lobby. It is also houses a general office, an exhibit room, a library, a conference room, a sick bay, an interviewing room, and two holding cells.

The second floor is a bit smaller than the first floor, measuring 3,000 square feet. It has a male dormitory as well as a female dormitory, quarters for inspectors of police, a recreation area with two open balconies, and separate washrooms.

This beautifully designed edifice painted in yellow and blue alongside the Questelles main road was furnished at a cost of $86,000.

Gonsalves told the residents of Questelles that provisions have been made for a fire tender with a view to decentralizing the fire service. He said this is in keeping with one of the recommendations of the Durrant Report of 2005.

A $150,000 down payment has already been made on the fire tender which will be sourced from England. This vehicle is expected to cost approximately $500,000 in total.

“This is an independence gift to the people of Questelles and South Leeward,” said Gonsalves.

Gonsalves said in 2007, police officers received a 42 per cent increase in salary. He stressed that instead of being happy for the lawmen, the critics charged that the first thing a communist does when he gets into power is to take care of the police.

“But how do they explain the 100 per cent mortgages for teachers and nurses and public servants, and all the benefits and advantages given to teachers,” Gonsalves questioned.

The new Questelles Police Station was designed and supervised by the Ministry of Transport and Works and the construction done by the Housing and Land Development Corporation (HLDC). (HN)

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