06/26/2012 02:47 EDT | Updated 08/26/2012 05:12 EDT

Port Coquitlam, Richmond RCMP Agreement Signed.. Reluctantly


PORT COQUITLAM, B.C. - Two more B.C. municipalities — Richmond and Port Coquitlam — have reluctantly signed a new 20-year RCMP services agreement, but they aren't ruling out quitting the deal after two years.

Municipal leaders in both cities say they have concerns about costs associated with the contract, including who pays for integrated policing teams or a new regional RCMP headquarters in Surrey.

But they say they're signing the deal before the June 30 deadline so they won't lose federal cost sharing funds.

Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie says his city's concerns with the RCMP contract have nothing to do with the effectiveness of the local detachment, but with the overall administration of the contract over the long term.

Although they've signed the contract, Richmond and Port Coquitlam are joining Burnaby and the city and district of North Vancouver in a two year study to seek other policing options.

If a better policing model can be found, the cities have the ability to opt out of the RCMP deal after two years.