By Jake Watson 
STIRLING – The Ontario Provincial Police  could be policing Stirling as early as this October.
The decision was made in late March, when it was revealed that the switch from Stirling’s current police force to OPP could save the community up to $300,000 a year.
According to news reports, the cost of OPP policing will be about $1.5 million a year, compared to the $1.8 million operating cost of the Stirling-Rawdon Police Service . That excludes a one-time $200,000 startup fee that will come with the switch.
According to Staff Sgt. Scott Semple, commander of the Central Hastings OPP detachment, the change has been pushed by the Stirling-Rawdon community.
“The whole process is driven by the municipality and their request for costing from the OPP. So it’s really motivated by the community itself,” said Semple.
The transition should be a smooth one, he said.
“My detachment is positioned well to deliver that service, and the model of policing that we offer to the five other municipalities that we police is adequate and effective. And we seem to be able to satisfy all the needs of those other five municipalities – so I don’t have any concerns about it.”
The five municipalities that the detachment already polices are Marmora and Lake, Centre Hastings, Madoc Township, Tudor Township and the Municipality of Tweed.
The OPP will not be operating out of the existing Stirling-Rawdon police building. They will continue be stationed at their Madoc headquarters on Highway 7.