Wayne Perinchief, Minister of National Security. *Photo by Kageaki Smith
Wayne Perinchief, Minister of National Security. *Photo by Kageaki Smith

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 24: Good afternoon. In this fiscal year the Ministry of National Security has delivered on its mandate to support those who keep Bermuda safe through uniformed service at our borders, on the streets, responding to accidents and fires and supporting civilian authorities. In 2012/13 we will continue to do that and we will do it well.

The modest increases in this year’s Budget represent, in the main, mandated operational costs, negotiated wage settlements and basic operational funding. The increases are neutral and represent this Ministry’s determination to deliver first rate service with a commitment to efficiency.

In each Department we have struck the correct balance required to meet the demands of these economic times while ensuring that the mandate of public safety is met for all in Bermuda.

While the focus of the public may be drawn to the budget for the Bermuda Police Service, the other areas under the Ministry are no less important. The restructuring of the Bermuda Fire & Rescue Service is supported by the allocation for 2012/13. The Bermuda Regiment will be able to fulfill its core training objectives and the Department of Border Control will have the resources to interdict contraband and dangerous articles before they reach our streets.

The Bermuda Police Service’s operational allocation is reflective of the needs of core policing today but with an eye to the future. The Commissioner continues to work diligently to reduce the amount of overtime which has historically been an issue. I am confident in his efforts and he has a set a tone for efficiency which is to be commended. There is still work to do and I am determined to support him in that effort.

This fiscal year the Police Service will be supported in the running of a Recruit Foundation Course. We have a pool of keen, first-rate Bermudians who will be engaged to commence training as police officers, providing the next wave of men and women dedicated to making our community safer.

In keeping with the need for modern policing methods and intelligence-led policing, the Government has supported the Police’s request for funding in the area of technology. $500 thousand dollars is allocated for extended CCTV networking and to replace aging cameras in the City of Hamilton. CCTV has played such an important role is securing convictions for offences committed in our communities that this initiative must be supported.

Computer systems form the backbone of sound case management and integrity in data maintenance. With a total allocation of $1.9m, this budget will support the creation of a data centre allowing for redundancy as well as complete the upgrade of the records management system. These robust additions to the network infrastructure enhance the tools of the modern age and allow the Police to work with cutting edge systems in support of their key deliverables.

This Budget clearly demonstrates that this Government recognizes the importance of public safety to the success of Bermuda. We are determined to make Bermuda safe to live, work, visit and do business.

Thank you.